Woodside’s revenue jumps on high LNG prices

Australian LNG player Woodside said its revenue more than doubled in the third quarter on the back of higher realized LNG prices.

The Perth-based company said third-quarter revenue increased to $1.53 billion from $699 million a year ago.

Revenue also increased 19 percent when compared to the second quarter.

Woodside’s CEO Meg O’Neill said revenue from LNG sales during the period rose 27 percent when compared to the second quarter despite the fact that planned maintenance activities at the North West Shelf project and Pluto LNG had impacted production.

The Australian firm said its average LNG price reached $57 per barrel of oil equivalent in the third quarter. This compares with $41/boe in the second quarter and $23/boe in the same quarter last year.

“We expect in the fourth quarter to see the benefit of stronger pricing on our realized prices, reflecting the oil price lag in many of our contracts and recent increases in gas hub prices. Our production guidance remains unchanged at 90-93 MMboe,” O’Neill said.

Woodside’s output declined to 22.2 million barrels of oil equivalent when compared to 25.3 mmboe in the same period last year. Production also dropped 2 percent when compared to the previous quarter.

O’Neill said the firm expects its full-year uncontracted LNG production sold on a spot basis to be slightly above 15 percent and includes additional November spot volume recently released to Woodside from the North West Shelf.

During the quarter, Woodside sold six equity LNG spot cargoes. The firm currently expects to sell about 17 percent of produced LNG on a spot basis in the fourth quarter.

On track for FID on Scarborough and second Pluto train

Woodside said in August it had signed a merger agreement with BHP’s oil and gas business.

The proposed merger worth about $28 billion would create the largest energy company listed on the ASX, with a global top 10 position in the LNG industry by production, according to Woodside.

“The agreement to pursue a proposed merger of Woodside and BHP’s petroleum business is progressing as planned,” O’Neill said.

Woodside expects execution of a share sale agreement and an integration and transition service agreement in November, in advance of targeted completion in the second quarter of 2022 following all approvals.

Furthermore, O’Neill also said Woodside is “on track” to make a final investment decision (FID) on the Scarborough and Pluto Train 2 developments before the end of this year.

“All major contracts and Commonwealth and Western Australia primary environmental approvals to support an FID are now in place, and commercial agreements are approaching finalization,” she said.

“The proposed Scarborough and Pluto Train 2 equity sell-downs are progressing well, and timing of the Pluto Train 2 sell-down is aligned with the targeted FID later this year,” O’Neill said.

Bechtel gets notice to proceed

Pluto Train 2 would process gas from the Scarborough gas resource and have a capacity of about 5 million tonnes per annum.

Pluto LNG currently processes gas from the offshore Pluto and Xena gas fields in Western Australia. Gas arrives through a 180 km trunkline to a single onshore 4.9 mtpa LNG processing train.

Woodside is the operator of Pluto LNG via Woodside Burrup (90 percent), while the other partners include Kansai Electric Power Australia (5 percent) and Tokyo Gas Pluto (5 percent).

“An important milestone has been achieved with the issue of a limited notice to proceed to Bechtel for Pluto Train 2, enabling engineering and procurement activities to progress, as well as the commencement of early works for the temporary construction accommodation village in Karratha,” O’Neill said.

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