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Possible Maui Gas Supply Shortfall

13 November 2001

Media Statement

Possible Maui Gas Supply Shortfall

Contact Energy Ltd’s Chief Executive, Steve Barrett, confirmed today that the company received a briefing on Friday 9 November from the Chairman of Maui Development Limited (MDL), Dr Lloyd Taylor, on the longer term possibility of a shortfall in gas supply from the Maui gas field, in approximately 2007. The briefing was arranged by the Crown as the buyer of Maui gas, and was also attended by the other two major Maui gas purchasers, Methanex and Natural Gas Corporation.

Commenting on the briefing Mr Barrett said, “a possible shortfall in reserves was identified as a risk for the company in the prospectus at the time of the sale of Contact in 1999. Within the company’s risk management framework we have taken steps to prepare for this potential eventuality. Our future planning can now adapt given the early warning provided by this analysis.

“Given the preliminary nature of this information, Contact is still examining the overall impact it will have on the company including the consequences for the electricity market. However, the company can assure residential and commercial gas consumers that there will be no material impact on the availability of gas as their use represents a very small proportion of total gas consumption.

“Contact will continue to seek new gas supplies to augment and eventually replace the supply of gas from the Maui Field. The company expects this information to stimulate further exploration for new sources of gas. Contact will also work with MDL and the other Maui gas users to find other reasonable means of mitigating the risks of any shortfall.”


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