Board members who oversee INPEX’s $55 billion liquified natural (LNG) gas processing facility in Darwin are set to make history tonight as the first to hold a board meeting outside of their headquarters in Japan.
The 12 members have taken the unprecedented step of choosing Darwin as the site for their regular meeting.
The Ichthys LNG Project’s involvement with Darwin began in September 2008, when INPEX (the Operator) and then sole joint venture partner Total announced the Northern Territory as the preferred home for its onshore processing facilities.
Flash forward to now, two gas processing facilities, or LNG trains, have been built as part of the project off the Browse Basin.
An ACIL Allen economic assessment of the impact of Ichthys LNG from 2012 to 2050 found the project is set to provide a $118 billion boost in economic output. At peak production, Ichthys LNG will boost the size of the NT economy by 15 per cent.
INPEX directly employs approximately 250 people in Australia, with an additional 600 contractors employed to support the maintenance and operation of the facilities.
The NT Government, INPEX and its joint venture partners reached an agreement for an optional development lease for the Ichthys LNG site in 2016.
The extension of the lease creates a pathway to develop additional LNG processing trains, and in turn, positive business and employment outcomes.
NT Chief Minister, Michael Gunner, is expected to discuss INPEX’s medium to long-term expansion plans beyond the two current LNG trains, during the Board’s visit.
Mr Gunner said that it’s a sign of great respect that the next INPEX board is meeting is being held in Darwin.
“The magnitude of this decision cannot be underestimated,” he commented.
“The fact INPEX chose Darwin over anywhere in the world where they have business interests is a testament to their confidence in the NT economy.”
“The Ichthys project is a 40-year commitment to Darwin. Excitingly we have the capacity for four more LNG trains in the medium to long term,” the Minister said.
The Ichthys LNG Project is a Joint Venture between INPEX group companies, major partner Total, CPC Corporation Taiwan and the Australian subsidiaries of Tokyo Gas, Osaka Gas, Kansai Electric Power, JERA and Toho Gas.