Shell clarifies its position on Pohokura
SHELL NEW ZEALAND
For Immediate Release
3 September 2003
Shell clarifies its position on Pohokura Development
Shell New Zealand Country Chairman Lloyd Taylor today went on record to correct misrepresentations attributed to a Pohokura “ joint venture senior executive” in today’s Independent newspaper following the Commerce Commission decision to conditionally approve joint gas marketing by the Pohokura Joint Venture.
“The article asserted that the Commerce Commission decision “had already thrown the Pohokura development timetable into complete disarray”. Shell refutes this assertion, noting that, from our perspective, the Commerce Commission’s approval of the application to jointly market gas is a positive step towards delivery of the project, which as noted in the application to the Commerce Commission targets first gas in 2006. This has always been the basis of Joint Venture planning, engineering work and schedule," Dr Taylor said.
“The Independent article noted the “executive” as representing that “the owners were most concerned about the June 2006 deadline”. Shell shares no such concern. Shell has the financing in place and we are ready, pending some final testing, to make a final investment decision in the first half of 2004, as per our original timetable, despite the Independent article casting doubt on that timetable.
“The “executive” quoted in the Independent article implied that project financing was being sought for the totality of the project. This is not the case. Shell intends to equity finance its 48% share of the project and stands committed to the schedule articulated in the application to the Commerce Commission.
“I cannot, and do not speak for other Pohokura Joint Venture partners, but from Shell perspective, Pohokura is still on track, despite our disappointment that the Commerce Commission has attached conditions to their approval for the joint marketing of the gas.
“The alarmist claims made in today’s Independent are unhelpful, and do not square with Shell’s reading of the situation,” Dr Taylor said.