If Exxon won’t, others will – Jagdeo on developing Guyana’s gas fields

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If ExxonMobil opts not to move ahead with gas development, in line with the Guyana government’s wishes, the prospects will be reallocated, said Vice President Bharrat Jagdeo. 

During a May 24 press conference, Jagdeo said work is being done to fully understand the quantity of gas in Guyana’s Stabroek Block. Exxon has discovered 17 trillion cubic feet to date.

“…our position holds, if they don’t want to go forward with a project on this, and there are others who may be willing to do it on their own, they’d have to relinquish it. We can’t have this lost opportunity there. They also have to relinquish 20% of the entire Stabroek Block by October of this year. They may include that area, or may not include that area, but if they don’t want to move with the gas project, then I believe they have to give up those areas,” Jagdeo said.

The government also received 17 proposals from groups interested in the design, finance, construction, and operation of essential gas infrastructure to support offshore developments. Jagdeo said Exxon could work with one of the groups if it opts to tap its gas discoveries.

Guyana is executing its first associated gas development with Exxon; a Gas-to-Energy project to slash electricity costs and reduce emissions associated with power generation.

ExxonMobil is focused on gas appraisal this year. It has been looking very closely at gas development options and evaluating which production facility would be best suited.  A potential standalone gas development is likely to be situated at the extreme eastern side of the Stabroek Block, near the border with Suriname, as that is where the largest quantities of proven gas are located. 

“We believe we can monetize our gas. We can do it through various sources. We can ship it out through [a liquid natural gas] LNG floating platform. We can bring the gas on shore to a bigger pipeline… then use it to generate power to sell….That’s a very lucrative venture. We can then use it for [the] petrochemical industry,” Jagdeo said.

A national gas strategy is being drafted, which will serve as a roadmap for the country’s gas development endeavors.


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