The To­tal pic­ture

Philippe Blan­chard, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor of To­tal E&P PNG, the op­er­a­tor of the Pa­pua LNG pro­ject, says pro­duc­tion is ex­pected to be­gin in 2022/2023.

Business Advantage Papua New Guinea - - Petroleum Papua Lng -

Busi­ness Ad­van­tage PNG: What has the last 12 months been about for To­tal?

Philippe Blan­chard: The last 12 months were mostly ded­i­cated to pro­gress­ing our Pa­pua LNG de­vel­op­ment. We drilled An­te­lope 6 at the be­gin­ning of 2016 and we are cur­rently drilling An­te­lope 7. An­te­lope 7 should be the last ap­praisal well. It is lo­cated to the west of the field and is re­quired to fi­nalise the as­sess­ment of Elk-an­te­lope re­sources. We have also started sev­eral field sur­veys re­quired to per­form the en­vi­ron­men­tal and so­cial im­pact as­sess­ments. That will pro­vide us with the base­line, which will be used to min­imise the po­ten­tial de­vel­op­ment im­pact on the com­mu­ni­ties and the en­vi­ron­ment.

Busi­ness Ad­van­tage PNG: So after you’ve fin­ished that well, you’ll have a re­ally good idea of ex­actly the ex­tent of gas re­serves?

Philippe Blan­chard: Yes. We should have a clearer pic­ture of what is in the ground and we hope that un­cer­tain­ties will be strongly re­duced

Busi­ness Ad­van­tage PNG: There is a lot of in­ter­est in the in­fras­truc­ture that’s go­ing to go into Gulf Province and the lo­ca­tion of any pro­cess­ing plant. There has also been dis­cus­sion of pos­si­bly shar­ing fa­cil­i­ties.

Philippe Blan­chard: In July 2015, we an­nounced the dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions. We said that Pa­pua LNG needed to be a cost­com­pet­i­tive pro­ject. A pro­cess­ing plant to sep­a­rate the gas from the liq­uids on PRL 15 will be lo­cated in Gulf Province; there will be trans­porta­tion pipe­lines bring­ing the gas and liq­uids to an LNG plant. Our de­ci­sion was to con­sider an LNG plant in Cau­tion Bay near Port Moresby. It will al­low us to ex­plore syn­er­gies with other projects. If we can make a bet­ter pro­ject and save on costs, why not? It is our re­spon­si­bil­ity as op­er­a­tor.

Busi­ness Ad­van­tage PNG: You have men­tioned pre­vi­ously that there is an op­por­tu­nity to present LNG to the mar­ket in around 2022. Is that win­dow still open?

Philippe Blan­chard: Yes, with our plan­ning as it stands to­day, that win­dow is still open. It’s more 2022/23 and all the teams are work­ing hard to re­spect this tar­get. This plan­ning con­sid­ers that FEED (Front End En­gi­neer­ing and De­sign) is due to start in 2017, for a fi­nal in­vest­ment de­ci­sion (FID) at the end of 2018. The con­struc­tion will hap­pen then be­tween 2019 and 2022. Busi­ness Ad­van­tage PNG: And, if that’s the case, when do you start hir­ing?

Philippe Blan­chard: First keep in mind that the pro­ject is al­ready ben­e­fit­ing the lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties as there are op­por­tu­ni­ties of­fered for lo­gis­tics and drilling ac­tiv­i­ties; how­ever, more peo­ple will be em­ployed in the com­ing years. Which year ex­actly? I would say that it de­pends on what type of work needs to be done. There will be site prepa­ra­tions for the dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions fol­lowed by con­struc­tion. So part of this could start in 2019.

Busi­ness Ad­van­tage PNG: How many staff have you at the mo­ment?

Philippe Blan­chard: For To­tal, we have about 140–150 peo­ple. These per­son­nel are lo­cated in Port Moresby but also on the ground on PRL15, where we have a lo­gis­tics base, a drilling site and a few sur­veys camps. In ad­di­tion, we have con­tracted staff on these sites.

Per­form­ing drilling ac­tiv­i­ties and base­line sur­veys at the same time re­quires car­ry­ing a lot of peo­ple from one place to the other, hence the lo­gis­tics base and the per­son­nel re­quire­ment. To con­duct all these op­er­a­tions, we are em­ploy­ing lo­cal civil works com­pa­nies for build­ing our well pads, lo­cal spe­cial­ists or ex­per­tise through our con­trac­tors for

the en­vi­ron­men­tal and so­cial base­line sur­veys.

Be­cause we are run­ning our ac­tiv­i­ties from PNG, all our con­trac­tors have an of­fice in Pa­pua New Guinea. It is eas­ier for in­ter­act­ing with them and check­ing directly how things are pro­gress­ing with­out hav­ing to travel abroad.

Op­er­a­tions at the Elk-an­te­lope re­source. Pic­ture of Philippe Blan­chard: Busi­ness Ad­van­tage In­ter­na­tional

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