TotalEnergies Delays Final Investment Decision for Papua LNG Project to 2025

(Reuters) — French oil and gas giant TotalEnergies on Monday said a planned new LNG project in Papua New Guinea would require 'more work' before a final investment decision could be reached.

TotalEnergies said its CEO Patrick Pouyanne recently told Papua New Guinea Prime Minister James Marape the project would need to work with third-party contractors to reach commercially viable engineering, procurement, and construction contracts.

"In that view, the project will review the structure of some packages and open the competition to an enlarged panel of Asian contractors. As a consequence, FID (final investment decision) of Papua LNG project is now expected in 2025," the company said.

The head of local producer Kumul Petroleum earlier said the final investment decision was due in 2024.

Marape and Pouyanne agreed the delay would not affect the early works planned in Papua New Guinea in 2024.

The 5.4 million tonnes per year Papua LNG is the second major gas project in the impoverished Pacific country and is a joint venture between TotalEnergies, Exxon Mobil and Santos along state-owned Kumul Petroleum.

The resource rich but impoverished South Pacific nation is looking to boost foreign investment and trade amid a jostle for influence in the region between the United States and China.

Environmental groups have said the LNG project is incompatible with keeping global warming below 1.5 C because of the emissions produced when the gas is burnt by customers.

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