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Santos pays billions for northern Australia LNG assets


Adelaide-based Santos has agreed to pay up to $2 billion for the northern Australia business of ConocoPhillips.

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Santos will pay $US1.39b for the business with operating interests in Darwin LNG, Bayu-Undan, Barossa and Poseidon, plus a $75 million contigent payment subject to a final investment decision on Barossa.

ConocoPhillips holds a range of production, development and exploration assets in northern Australia, and is operator and majority owner of Darwin’s LNG facility, with a capacity of  3.7 million tonnes per annum of LNG and potential to expand.

Santos managing director and CEO Kevin Gallagher said Santos had a long relationship with ConocoPhillips.

“Santos was a founding partner with ConocoPhillips in Darwin LNG, which has been operating since 2006,” he said.

“The acquisition of these assets fully aligns with Santos’ growth strategy to build on existing infrastructure positions while advancing our aim to be a leading regional LNG supplier.

“This acquisition delivers operatorship and control of strategic LNG infrastructure at Darwin, with approvals in place supporting expansion to 10 mtpa, and the low cost, long life Barossa gas project.

Gallagher said the move would “strengthen our offshore operating and development expertise and capabilities to drive growth in offshore northern and Western Australia”.

“Santos is also committed to be Australia’s leading domestic gas supplier and we will be pursuing domestic gas opportunities in the Northern Territory from our broader northern Australia gas portfolio where we have significant resource potential both onshore and offshore,” he said.

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