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Indonesia to decide on Inpex plans to increase Masela field output

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LNG Industry,

According to Reuters, a senior energy official has announced that, within the next one or two weeks, the country is expected to decide on a plan by Inpex Corp. to increase the proposed output from the Masela natural gas field.

The field was originally expected to produce 2.5 million tpy of LNG, but Reuters reports that Coordinating Maritime Minister, Luhut Pandjaitan, has said: “We are still discussing the capacity of Masela – between 7.5 million tpy and 9.5 million tpy.”

This marks the second time that Inpex and Shell have proposed to increase output from the field. Nevertheless, Reuters reports that a spokesman for Inpex in Jakarta said that there are still several conditions that would need to be met for investment in the project to be possible.

In March 2016, the President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, rejected a US$15 billion plan by both companies to develop a floating LNG (FLNG) unit to process gas from the Masela field. Widodo claimed that an onshore facility would be of greater benefit to the local economy. This decision means that production from the field is not expected to commence until the late 2020s, with an onshore LNG plant to be constructed on either Aru or Saumlaki island. In turn, Reuters claims that this facility is expected to encourage the construction of both fertilizer and petrochemical facilities in the eastern province of Maluku.

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