26 May 2009

PNG landowners sign gas deal worth billions

8:29 am on 26 May 2009

Papua New Guinea landowners have signed a multibillion-dollar deal with ExxonMobil for a liquefied natural gas project.

ExxonMobil estimates the 30-year project in East New Britain province will double PNG's gross domestic product through taxes and gas sales.

The $US7 billion deal ends five weeks of talks involving up to 1,000 resource owners.

Landowners and provincial government have secured 7% equity in the project from the PNG government's 19.4% stake.

The project involves building a pipeline to pump gas from the Highlands region to the coast for shipping and then processing in Port Moresby.