BHP Billiton Limited
15 November 2004
'BHP Billiton Limited is issuing this announcement to fulfil disclosure
obligations arising from its secondary listing on the London Stock Exchange.
The text of this announcement is identical to that issued by BHP Billiton Plc
Date 15 November 2004
BHP BILLITON TO SELL ITS INTERESTS IN THE
LAMINARIA AND CORALLINA OIL FIELDS
BHP Billiton today announced it has agreed to sell its interests in the
Laminaria and Corallina oil fields to Paladin Oil & Gas (Australia) Pty Ltd, a
fully owned subsidiary of Paladin Resources plc, an independent oil and gas
company listed on the London Stock Exchange.
The purchase price is US$150 million effective as at 1 July 2004, and is subject
to adjustments for working capital and cash flow movements between 1 July 2004
The sale of BHP Billiton's interests in the Laminaria and Corallina oil fields
is part of the Company's active portfolio management strategy. Following a
review, BHP Billiton's interests in the fields were identified as being non-core
to BHP Billiton's future petroleum strategy.
The Laminaria and neighbouring Corallina oil fields were discovered in 1994 and
1995 respectively, and are located in the Timor Sea, about 550km west-north-west
of Darwin, in offshore production licences AC/L5 and WA-18-L.
The fields were developed with a Floating Production Storage and Offloading
facility, the Northern Endeavour, which is moored between the two oil fields in
385 metres of water. Oil production from Laminaria and Corallina commenced in
November 1999, and a second phase of development commenced production in June
2002. The facility is operated by Woodside Energy Ltd.
The sale to Paladin is subject to the pre-emptive rights of joint venture
participants, and formal government approvals. The transaction is expected to be
completed in early 2005.
BHP Billiton has a 32.6125 per cent interest in Laminaria. The other
participants are Woodside Energy Ltd (operator - 44.925 per cent) and Shell
Development (Australia) Proprietary Limited (22.4625 per cent). The Laminaria
field is unitised over licences AC/L5 and WA-18-L.
BHP Billiton has a 25 per cent interest in Corallina. The other participants are
Woodside Energy Ltd (operator- 50 per cent) and Shell Development (Australia)
Proprietary Limited (25 per cent).
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