November 22, 2019 / 3:59 AM / 16 days ago

Papua New Guinea flags talks with Exxon on $13 bln gas expansion hit impasse

MELBOURNE, Nov 22 (Reuters) - Papua New Guinea’s petroleum minister flagged on Friday that talks with Exxon Mobil Corp tied to a $13 billion gas expansion had reached an impasse as the U.S. oil giant was unwilling to negotiate on the country’s terms.

The state’s negotiating team had set out draft terms for negotiations on developing the P’nyang gas field, which Petroleum Minister Kerenga Kua said were in line with international standards and would ensure a “fair deal” for PNG.

“It is disappointing Exxon has refused to even consider these terms and we urge them to reconsider their position,” Kua said in a statement emailed to Reuters.

Exxon Mobil’s PNG spokesman was not immediately available to comment.

The P’nyang agreement is one of two agreements needed for Exxon and its partners Total SA, Oil Search and Santos Ltd to go ahead with a $13 billion plan to double LNG exports from PNG. The other agreement, the Papua LNG pact, was sealed with Total in September. (Reporting by Sonali Paul; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

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