More than 10,000 jobs could be created if energy developer Total invests about US$10 billion in the Elk-Antelope gas field project in Papua New Guinea.
The National newspaper reports that the chief executive and chairman of the French oil and gas company, Patrick Pouyanne, revealed this during his meeting with the Prime Minister Peter O'Neill.
Mr Pouyanne said Total intends to build its own facilities.
He said there was a lot of gas in Elk Antelope but it's important to continue the appraisal by drilling another well.
Before beginning in 2017, Total wants to be able to confirm the size of the project.
Mr Pouyanne said there will be lows and highs and a decision can still be made to invest even if prices are low now because they will recover.
He said Total have the financial capacity and vision for the project.