TotalEnergies, together with its joint venture partners, is set to start the first phase of front-end engineering and design (FEED) studies for the upstream production facilities at Papua LNG project.

The LNG project is located 20km northwest of Port Moresby, at Caution Bay on the south coast of Papua New Guinea’s (PNG’s) Central Province.

It is being developed under a JV between Total E&P PNG (TEP PNG) with a 40.13% stake, which is also the operator, ExxonMobil with a 37.03% stake and Oil Search with a 22.84% stake.

Simultaneously, the JV is also progressing the studies for downstream liquefaction facilities at the project, with plans to launch the integrated FEED in the fourth quarter of this year.

A final investment decision (FID) for the Papua LNG project development is expected by the end of 2023 and is anticipated start operations by the end of 2027.

Furthermore, the project is planned to be developed with sustainability, biodiversity, and low carbon emissions, with an incorporated carbon capture and storage scheme.

TotalEnergies exploration, production and renewables Asia Pacific senior vice president Julien Pouget said: “The commencement of upstream FEED studies is another significant step towards developing the Papua LNG project, which will increase Papua New Guinea’s LNG export capacity and thus contribute to its further development.

“The Papua LNG project is well positioned to contribute to growth in LNG supply worldwide, especially for customers in Asia seeking to decarbonize from coal to gas, in line with our strategy to lower global greenhouse gas emissions.”

In 2019, Total and its partners signed an agreement with the Independent State of Papua New Guinea defining the fiscal framework for the Papua LNG project.

In May last year, Total signed an agreement with the Papua New Guinea government to proceed with the Papua LNG project, which had been shelved due to the Covid-19 pandemic.