14 Jan 2012

LNG project confirmed

1:33 pm on 14 January 2012

Inpex of Japan and Total of France have confirmed they will proceed with a $A33 billion gas project in Darwin and off the coast of Western Australia.

Inpex chairman Naoki Kuroda made the announcement in Darwin on Friday.

The Japanese gas company says about 8.4 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas will be produced each year when the Ichthys project is operational.

The ABC reports the Darwin plant will process natural gas piped about 800km from the Browse Basin off the coast of Kimberley, WA.

Inpex and Total have already signed long-term sale and purchase agreements for the gas with Japanese and Taiwanese utility companies.

These cover the total projected LNG production from Ichthys for 15 years from 2017.

The first gas from the plant is expected to be produced in 2016.

Mr Kuroda says it will be one of the world's largest LNG facilities.

The ABX reports about 3000 workers will be needed for the onshore construction phase, and a further 1000 offshore.

Mr Kuroda said approximately 700 permanent positions will be required when the project is in operation.

He said gas and condensate reserves in the Browse Basin would last around 40 years.