Statoil Finds More Gas Off Tanzania, Eyes LNG Plant

Source: Reuters 6/18/2014, Location: Africa

Norway's Statoil said it had found more gas off Tanzania, raising chances that a proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant could be bigger than initially planned. Tanzania's relative cost advantages, an abundance of gas and proximity to Asia's main LNG buyers make it attractive as a site for an LNG plant.

The company said it discovered an additional 2-3 trillion cubic feet (tcf) in Block 2 offshore Tanzania, boosting the total discovery to about 20 tcf (566 billion cubic metres).

At 1318 GMT, Statoil shares traded at 189.7 crowns, 1.07 percent up from Tuesday's close. Statoil said Tanzania's authorities had asked Statoil and other companies exploring for gas, including BG Group to present their proposals for the LNG plant.

"We have presented our proposal several months ago, but we are still in a very early stage," said Knut Rostad, a spokesman for the company. "There is enough gas to build one LNG train, but the new discovery increases possibilities for a second (LNG) train," he added, referring to a processing unit.

The latest discovery follows a similar-sized find last December. Statoil said it planned to drill several additional exploration and appraisal wells in Tanzania in 2014 and 2015. Statoil owns a 65 percent stake in the Tanzania licence while ExxonMobil holds the remaining 35 percent.


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