May 7, 2010
By Jane Bardon
Woodside says it expects the East Timorese people will force their
Government to overturn a decision to block Woodside processing gas
from the Greater Sunrise field on a floating platform.
Both East Timor and the Northern Territory had hoped to persuade
Woodside to establish an onshore site in their jurisdictions.
Woodside chief executive, Don Voelte, says the offshore plan will
still be worth $13 billion each to East Timor and Australia.
He does not think the East Timorese Government will carry out its
threat to break an international treaty to block the plan.
“A treaty that was very defined, not done under duress, and done with
much due dilligence and they’re walking away from it now? I dont
think that’s going to work.”
The Territory Chief Minister, Paul Henderson, says other companies
are likely to follow Woodside’s decision to build its processing
plant offshore, instead of on the Australian mainland.
Mr Henderson says the Territory and other mainland jurisdictions have
to accept that it is cheaper to process offshore in many cases.
“We are going to see more and more of these remote fields processed
offshore, that’s the reality of where technology is heading,” he said.
“But there is an upside to this as well: there are many discovered
fields to the north of Darwin that are too small on their own to
support bringing offshore platforms and pipelines to Darwin.”