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UpstreamOnline: Costs weigh on booming gas market (*latest news of another unscrupulous Shell exec: Jon Chadwick)

By Amanda Battersby

The world’s gas industry is booming, with demand for the fuel increasing in many markets, but the opportunities this growth offers for new projects and expansions is matched by technical challenges and escalating costs, delegates at the keynote session of the Gastech 2008 conference were told.

Costs for liquefied natural gas projects have increased by up to three times since the start of the decade, said Brunei Darussalam Minister for Energy Paduka Bakar.

His sentiments were echoed by Shell Gas & Power executive vice president Asia Pacific Jon Chadwick who noted that costs are “rising relentlessly”.

However, rising costs do not seem to be deterring oil companies from mega-investments, as Chevron took unveiled the launch of its Wheatstone LNG project in Australia and the green light for the $3.1 billion Platong Gas II project at Gastech 2008.

Meanwhile, Chadwick unveiled Shell’s plans for a fleet of generic floating LNG vessels that are intended to unlock the commercial potential of remote gas and gas and liquids fields. (See separate story).

ExxonMobil did not, as some within the industry had expected, tell the gas world that it had moved into the front-end engineering and design phase of its Papua New Guinea LNG project.

However ExxonMobil Gas & Power Marketing Company president Andy Swiger said that the PNG LNG marketing team was at Gastech 2008 to start marketing negotiations for this planned grassroots liquefaction project.

The Gastech 2008 conference and exhibition in Bangkok was opened in the presence of Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn.
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10 March 2008 07:27 GMT  | last updated: 10 March 2008 07:31 GMT

*Headline comment in brackets added by John Donovan

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