Bloomberg News

Woodside Expects Sixfold Increase in China, India LNG Demand

October 26, 2011

(Adds LNG projects in third paragraph.)

Oct. 26 (Bloomberg) -- Woodside Petroleum Ltd., developer of the A$14.9 billion ($15.5 billion) Pluto liquefied natural gas project in Australia, said demand for the less-polluting fuel will increase sixfold in China and India.

“In addition to ongoing steady demand from traditional LNG importers such as Japan, Korea and Taiwan, sixfold increases in demand for LNG, albeit off a low base, are expected from both China and India between now and 2025,” Chief Executive Officer Peter Coleman said in Perth today. “The likes of Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore and Thailand will also emerge as significant LNG importers.”

Coleman, who took control of Woodside in May, plans to develop an estimated A$61 billion in Australian LNG projects with existing partners including BP Plc and Chevron Corp. Global natural-gas trade increased 10 percent last year from 2009 as energy use soared, BP said in July, with LNG shipments gaining 23 percent.

“Total LNG demand in Asia is forecast to reach more than 240 million tons per annum by the end of this decade, equal to about 68 percent of global demand,” Coleman said.

Woodside aims to approve the Browse venture in Western Australia in mid-2012 and expects to develop a second stage at Pluto, also in the state, after the project begins exports in March. Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Chevron and Santos Ltd. are among producers building or planning almost A$250 billion in LNG projects in Australia, according to Deloitte Access Economics.

Australia’s second-largest oil and gas producer rose 0.8 percent to A$34.75 at 2:08 p.m. in Sydney trading, compared with a 0.3 percent increase in the S&P/ASX 200 Index. Woodside has dropped 18 percent this year.

--With assistance from Ben Sharples in Melbourne. Editors: Ryan Woo, Baldave Singh.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jason Scott in Melbourne at jscott14@bloomberg.net

To contact the reporter on this story: Ryan Woo at rwoo5@bloomberg.net.


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