Managing director Wapu Sonk said the province had potential gas fields for commercialisation.
Sonk said what the country had always considered “stranded gas” because it was either too small or too far out of the way to justify the investment, could collectively be a major supply of gas and condensate.
“In the Southern Highlands and downstream in Caution Bay, ExxonMobil lead the joint venture which produced the ground-breaking PNG LNG project, a project which put PNG on the LNG map and proved once and for all that mega projects could be built in PNG,” he said.
“Total, another super major with an outstanding reputation, now leads the effort to commercialise the other massive gas reserves in and around the Elk/Antelope field. I’m sure that they, like Exxon will eventually bring this to fruition.
“However there is another great gas reserve in PNG, a collection of mainly small fields, mostly scattered across the vast Western province, which when you add up, could have reserves of around 8 tcf (trillion cubic feet) of gas, a very viable commercial volume.
“While some have been discovered decades ago, they’ve never been commercialised because they are too remote, too small, too many different owners, too far away from markets, and all together just too hard.