20/10/2009 - 07:43

NWS drives economic transformation

20/10/2009 - 07:43

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The Woodside-operated North West Shelf venture has contributed $70 billion to Australia's gross domestic product in the past 20 years, a new report by economic consultants ACIL Tasman has found.

NWS drives economic transformation

The Woodside-operated North West Shelf venture has contributed $70 billion to Australia's gross domestic product in the past 20 years, a new report by economic consultants ACIL Tasman has found.

The report, Nation Builder: How the North West Shelf Project has driven economic transformation in Australia, was commissioned to mark the 25th anniversary of domestic gas production in Western Australia and 20 years of LNG exports.

Launched at Parliament House in Canberra today by federal Resources and Energy Minister Martin Ferguson, the report found that North West Shelf project is one of the largest resource developments undertaken in Australia to date, involving construction expenditures of more than $27 billion.

Since liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports began from the project in 1989, the venture has generated export revenues approaching $60 billion and increased GDP totalling more than $70 billion or almost 1 per cent per annum, the report said.

The report also found that:
- Construction expenditures of more than $50 billion would be required to construct the NWS project facilities today.
- Total annual taxation benefits for the Commonwealth, including royalties, estimated to be approaching $4 billion, and for the Western Australian state and local governments, to be around $0.9 billion per annum.
- The Karratha gas plant is currently Western Australia's largest producer of domestic gas, accounting for about 65 per cent of total state production.

Woodside chief executive Don Voelte said the NWS project was a "bold and visionary" development, which paved the way for the growth of Australia's upstream energy industry, and established this nation as a major international supplier of LNG.

The chairman of the NWS venture principals leadership team said the new report comprehensively described the far-reaching impact of Australia's greatest resource development and one of the world's largest LNG production facilities.

"Today this landmark operation continues to contribute to Australia's prosperity, providing around $4 billion in Commonwealth taxes and royalties, injecting more than $800 million a year through operating expenditure and investing millions of dollars each year in the local community," Mr Voelte said.

Woodside executive vice president, NWS and chief executive officer of the venture, Eve Howell, said the report also highlighted the joint venture participants' continued investment in developing infrastructure for the future.

Ms Howell said the NWS has created a legacy for future generations of Australians who will continue to benefit from ongoing investment in this vital production infrastructure.

"The joint venture participating companies recognise the importance of the North West Shelf project to Australia's economic prosperity, and are continuing to invest to ensure safe and reliable supply from our facilities for years to come," she said.

The facilities include offshore production platforms and subsea infrastructure, onshore processing, storage and loading facilities at the Karratha gas plant on Western Australia's Burrup Peninsula, an LNG shipping fleet and a supply base which supports offshore activities.

Production accounts for more that 40 per cent of Australia's oil and gas and the Karratha Gas Plant has the capacity to produce up to 16.3 million tonnes of LNG annually. More than 2,700 LNG cargoes have been delivered to international markets since 1989.

The six participants in the North West Shelf Venture are BHP Billiton Petroleum (North West Shelf) Pty Ltd, BP Developments Australia Pty Ltd, Chevron Australia Pty Ltd, Japan Australia LNG (MIMI) Pty Ltd, Shell Development (Australia) Pty Ltd and Operator, Woodside Energy Ltd. The China National Offshore Oil Corporation is also part of the North West Shelf Venture but does not have an interest in its infrastructure.

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