MEO Australia Limited (ASX:MEO) Tassie Shoal LNG Project Technology and Cost Estimate Update

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Melbourne, Australia, Nov 14, 2012 - (ABN Newswire) - MEO Australia Limited (ASX:MEO.AX - News) (OTCQX:MEOAY - News) advises that it has received the final reports recently commissioned to assess the technology basis and provide updated development cost estimates for the Tassie Shoal LNG Project ("TSLNG"). The reports were commissioned from major international engineering firms WorleyParsons and Arup, with input from APCI.

The TSLNG cost estimate is an overall capital spend of US$2.0 Billion (including contingency of 25%) to produce 3.0 million tonnes per annum (MTA) of LNG. It is estimated that an incremental investment of $220 Million (11%) is required to increase nameplate capacity to 4.0MTA (30% capacity increase). All cost estimates are on a +/-25% basis, consistent with the pre-FEED status of the TSLNG project. A high level breakdown of the cost estimates is provided in Table 1 (see link below for tables).

MEO estimates that TSLNG (when scaled up to a 3.6MTA capacity to simplify the cost comparison) represents a ~US$2 - $4 Billion capital cost advantage for a TSLNG development compared with onshore and FLNG alternatives. Key elements of the savings are summarised in Table 2.

Additional activities to mature the engineering and cost estimates have been identified and will proceed commensurately with the commercial development of the project.

MEO's Executive Manager Business Development Robert Zammit commented:

"MEO currently holds a 100% interest in TSLNG and it's pleasing to see the globally competitive development costs re-affirmed by the technology and cost reviews by the industry's leading engineering firms. Business development activities are focussed on providing a compelling fast-track commercialisation path for MEO equity gas, and potentially for other regional resource owners. Additionally, TSLNG represents one of several development options for potential farminees to MEO's WA-454P*, particularly those seeking a clear line of sight to an LNG commercialisation path with existing environmental approvals and the potential for an equity aligned upstream and midstream plant ownership structure."

* see ASX release 10/10/2012 - WA-454 Farm Out

Tassie Shoal LNG Project
(MEO 100%)

Project Overview

The Tassie Shoal LNG Project (TSLNG) offers a commercialisation path to LNG for any of the remote gas resources in the region. The design basis is that liquids would be removed from the raw gas at the field location and dry gas piped to Tassie Shoal for processing into LNG.

The location is adjacent to many undeveloped gas resources in the region including the Blackwood and Heron discoveries in the nearby NT/P68 exploration permit (MEO 50%) and is approximately 400kms from MEO's 100% owned WA-454P permit.

Key Project Metrics

- Water Depth: ~15m

- Capacity: 3.0MTA, expandable to 4.0MTA

- Single module construction

- Processing platform: Jack-up steel structure

- Self installing platform: 100m x 50m

- APCI Dual Mixed Refrigerant technology

- Gas feed assumption:

- Process Cooling: Closed loop fresh water with indirect seawater heat exchange

- Storage: 170,000 m3 conventional secondary containment tank on concrete GBS caisson

- LM6000 Aero-derivative gas turbine drivers

- Electric drives

- Conventional Jetty

- Fabrication Location: South East Asia - TBC

Designed by the World's Leading Experts

Pre-FEED design has been completed and the project costed by the world's leading designers WorleyParsons, Arup with input from APCI.

Competitive Advantage - single module construction

TSLNG design embeds a number of key competitive advantages when compared to onshore or FLNG alternatives:

- Shallow water development site at Tassie Shoal

- Benign metocean conditions

- Facilities to be located on sea floor, avoiding FLNG complexities

- Process plant designed to be constructed in a single module and carried by heavy lift vessel to site and placed directly on sea floor

- LNG tank to be constructed in casting basin and wet towed to site, then ballasted directly onto sea floor

- Construction at a low cost SE Asian site

- Low cost seawater cooling process

- Able to be relocated at end of project life

Environmental Approvals

MEO has secured Federal Government Environmental Approvals for an LNG plant to be located at Tassie Shoal. TSLNG Project was assessed by the Federal Government under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 and Environmental Approval was granted in 2004. The approval was reviewed and renewed in 2012.

Major Project Facilitation Status

The project has been granted Major Project Facilitation (MPF) status by the Federal Government Department of Infrastructure and Transport. The Australian government grants Major Project Facilitiation (MPF) status to projects that meet strict criteria. The MPF service endeavours to ensure that Commonwealth approval processes are coordinated with relevant state and territory government approval processes. MPF status was renewed in 2012.

Indicative Cost Savings over Onshore or FLNG

The following comparison table details MEO's estimate of indicative costs for development of 3.6 MTA LNG plants supplied from an indicative low CO2 gas resource.

Surrounding Area Activity

Heron/Blackwood (NT/P68)

Eni and MEO are engaged in a program to appraise the Heron and Blackwood discoveries after which development options will be considered.

Evans Shoal (NT/P48)

The Evans Shoal gas discovery lies directly adjacent to NT/P68 and only 10 km from Tassie Shoal. In October 2011 Santos reached agreement with Eni to divest their 40% interest in the Evans Shoal field for up to US$350 million. An appraisal well is planned for 2012/3.

Barossa (NT/P69)

The last well drilled in the permit in 2006 tested 16% CO2 gas. In June 2012 SK E&S farmed into both NT/P69 and NT/P61 earning up to a 49.5% interest in both permits for funding up to US$520 million in carry obligations and contingent milestone payments. Three appraisal wells are planned for 2013.

Caldita (NT/P61)

The last well drilled in the permit in 2007 tested 13% CO2 gas. In June 2012 SK E&S farmed into both NT/P69 and NT/P61 earning up to a 49.5% interest in both permits for funding up to US$520 million in carry obligations and contingent milestone payments.

Greater Sunrise (NT/RL2, NT/RL4, JPDA 03-19, JPDA 03-20)

Woodside and their joint venturers have proposed a 4MTA Floating LNG option for the gas resource located at Greater Sunrise, which partly lies within the Joint Petroleum Development Area cooperatively administered by Australia and Timor-Leste. The Timor-Leste authorities have indicated the development concept is unacceptable.

Marina & Breakwater (WA-454P)

MEO plans a farm-out of this permit in 2012/3 with an appraisal program anticipated to commence as soon as practicable.

View the complete MEO Australia announcement including Tables and Figures at the link below:
http://media.abnnewswire.net/media/en/docs/ASX-MEO-382230.pdf

About MEO Australia Limited:

MEO Australia Ltd (ASX:MEO.AX - News) (OTCQX:MEOAY - News) is an ASX listed, independent oil and gas company focused on building a substantial Australian and international E&P business servicing the rapidly growing Asian energy markets.

The Company has assembled a portfolio of exploration, appraisal and development stage opportunities on the NW Shelf, the Ashmore Cartier and the Timor Sea regions in Australia, offshore North Sumatra, and on Madura Island, East Java in Indonesia and the Gulf of Thailand.

MEO has also attracted a high calibre Board of Directors and proven Executive, Technical and Commercial talent with a demonstrated track record of attracting and partnering with globally recognised industry participants.

MEO Australia is listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX: MEO, OTC: MEOAY) and is headquartered in Melbourne, Australia.


Contact:

 
MEO Australia Limited
T: +61-3-8625-6000
F: +61-3-9614-0660
E: admin@meoaustralia.com.au
WWW: www.meoaustralia.com.au
 

Source:

MEO Australia Limited

Copyright (C) 2012 ABN Newswire. All rights reserved.

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