East Timor government rejects floating rig proposal to explore gas in Greater Sunrise field

30 April 2010

Dili, East Timor, 30 April – The government of East Timor has rejected the solution put forward by the Woodside company to build a floating rig for natural gas exploration at the Greater Sunrise field, in a statement published Thursday in Dili.

The statement, which was signed by government spokesman Ágio Pereira and the Secretary of State for Natural Resources, Alfredo Pires, said that the concept of a floating rig for Greater Sunrise, “is not in the best interests of the people of East Timor, neither technically nor commercially.”

Pereira, government spokesman and secretary of State for the Council of Minister, re-stated the government’s position that, “the nation is firmly focused on building an oil industry on land, including a gas pipeline to East Timor from the Greater Sunrise field.”

East Timor, “will not approve any development of Greater Sunshine that does not include a gas pipeline to East Timor” the statement said, which criticised the announcement made by Woodside for presenting its option before properly consulting the owners of the resources (Australia and East Timor).

Pires in his turn said that the Greater Sunrise process was still at an initial stage and, “very far from any approval of a development plan.”

The Greater Sunrise field is explored by Woodside (34 percent stake and operator), ConocoPhilips (30 percent), Shell (26 percent) and Osaka Gas (10 percent). (macauhub)