ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) today announced that it has entered into a set of agreements with PetroChina Company Ltd. (PetroChina) whereby PetroChina will acquire an interest in two Western Australia exploration assets and establish a Joint Study Agreement (JSA) for unconventional resource development in Sichuan Basin in China.
Under these agreements, which still require government and partner approvals, PetroChina will acquire a working interest in the Poseidon offshore discovery in the Browse Basin, and in the Goldwyer Shale in the onshore Canning Basin. In addition, ConocoPhillips will enter into a Joint Study Agreement to identify unconventional resource reserves in the Neijiang-Dazu Block in China’s Sichuan Basin.
“ConocoPhillips is pleased that PetroChina has recognized the significant resource potential and value of the Australian opportunities. Likewise, ConocoPhillips recognizes the Sichuan Basin as having some of the most prospective marine shales in China and looks forward to working with one of the world’s leading energy companies,” said Don Wallette, executive vice president, Commercial, Business Development and Corporate Planning, ConocoPhillips. “The signing of these three agreements marks a significant step toward increased global collaboration between our companies.”
Under the terms of the agreement with ConocoPhillips, PetroChina will acquire working interest in the two Australian projects; specifically 20 percent of Poseidon in the Browse Basin and 29 percent of Goldwyer in the Canning Basin.
Under the JSA, ConocoPhillips and PetroChina will study the potential for unconventional resource development in the approximately 500,000 acre Neijiang-Dazu Shale Block in the Sichuan Basin. The joint study will be an important step in evaluating the potential for unconventional resource exploration in the area. If technically and commercially viable, the companies will advance development under a production sharing contract, which would be agreed upon during the study period.
Todd Creeger, President, ConocoPhillips Australia-West said the agreement with PetroChina was significant for the company’s growth plans in both China and Australia. “We welcome PetroChina as a new joint venture participant in our Australian offshore and onshore exploration projects. We look forward to jointly delivering two successful assets,” Creeger said.