Woodside and partners commit $1.2bn for Persephone project expansion

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Australian petroleum exploration and production company Woodside and its partners have agreed to commit $1.2 billion to expand the Persephone project – the country’s biggest oil and gas development.

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The Persephone Project, which will be operated by Woodside,  is the third major gas development of the North West Shelf project, off the coast of Western Australia, in the past six years.

According to SBS, the new development would contribute to the ongoing success of the 30-year-old oil and gas field, demonstrating the joint venture’s commitment to maximising the value of Australia’s largest operating oil and gas project.

The approval of funds for Persephone comes amid growing uncertainties about Woodside’s future growth and after its exit from the $US2.7 billion Leviathan joint venture gas deal in Israel in May.

A final investment decision on its other major growth prospect, WA’s Browse project – which is expected to deliver billions of dollars in government revenue, and approximately 1000 direct jobs during its 40-50 year operations – is expected late next year.

“The NWS project celebrated 30 years of domestic gas production and 25 years of LNG exports earlier this year and approval of Persephone is the next step in continuing this success story,” Woodside Chief Executive Peter Coleman said on Thursday.

Woodside, which holds a 16.7% stake alongside project partners including BP, Chevron, Shell and BHP Billiton, expects the project to produce its first gas in early 2018.