The company said that the installation of the control umbilical completes the offshore construction phase of the Sole Gas Project, which calls for the development of the Sole gas field in the Gippsland Basin. The offshore gas field is planned to be developed as a single, vertical subsea well that will be connected to the Orbost Gas Plant through pipelines and umbilicals.

Cooper Energy said that the only work left to be done on the offshore gas project is repair of a damaged pipe section, which it expects to begin in late April.

By the end of February, the company completed 93% of the project and expects to fully complete it and make it ready and available to supply gas to the Orbost Gas Plant for processing by end-May 2019.

The Orbost Gas Plant, which is owned by APA Group, has been undergoing an extensive upgrade with an investment of A$250m ($177.5m), following which it is expected to produce 68TJ/day, once all construction work is completed.

Cooper Energy, in a statement, said: “Work on the onshore element of the project to upgrade Orbost Gas Plant to process gas from Sole is well advanced. APA are currently assessing the most likely plant completion date within the September quarter and working closely with Cooper Energy to confirm timing and ensure a safe and reliable start-up for the plant.

“Gas supply from Sole to the Orbost Gas Plant is expected to commence prior to plant completion for the commissioning and the subsequent plant performance test.”

Cooper Energy took a final investment decision (FID) on the Sole Gas Project in August 2017 after securing A$400m ($284m) for its funding. The company, on its own, had committed an investment of A$355m ($252m) on the offshore gas project, which has been designed to supply gas to the south-east part of Australia.

Development of the Sole gas field is anticipated to increase the Australian company’s proven and probable reserves by 362% through the addition of 43 million boe.