China increases investment in QCLNG project by $1.9bn

The China National Offshore Oil Corporation has increased its stake in the QCLNG project being constructed on Curtis Island after increasing its share in BG Group's Surat and Bowen Basin tenements to the tune of $1.9 billion.

The deal, which also involves increased equity in gas processing infrastructure, means the state-owned company has increased its stake from 5 per cent to 25 per cent.

BG Group chief executive Chris Finlayson said the sale highlighted the company’s ability to manage its portfolio, The Observer reported.

"Our relationship with CNOOC has grown as they increase their investment in our QCLNG project, and BG Group becomes the largest supplier of LNG to the world's fastest growing energy market," Finlayson said.

"Today's agreements exemplify our strategy to manage our portfolio more actively, monetise assets at different stages in their life cycle and bring in key partners to accelerate value delivery."

CNOOC has also acquired a 40 per cent equity interest in QCLNG Train 1, increasing its equity ownership from 10 per cent to 50 per cent.

The two companies will jointly invest to construct two LNG ships in China, adding to two vessels already committed under an LNG agreement signed in 2010, and CNOOC will have the option to participate up to 25 per cent in one of the potential expansion trains at QCLNG.

BG Group's Australian arm QGC remains operator and retains majority ownership of the QCLNG project. 

The gas will be piped to the Curtis Island liquefied natural gas plant off Gladstone, for export from next year.

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