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Origin Energy: Australia LNG Project On Time, Within Budget

05/03/2012 | 10:30pm US/Eastern

Origin Energy Ltd. (>> Origin Energy Limited) said Friday there has been no change to the underlying cost estimate of its US$14 billion Australian gas-export joint venture project.

"The Australia Pacific LNG project is progressing on schedule to deliver first gas in 2015 and there has been no change in the cost of the underlying activities for the project, based on currency splits at the time of (final investment decision)," a spokeswoman for Origin said in an e-mailed statement.

BG Group PLC (BG.LN), which is building a rival Australian liquefied natural gas project in Queensland state, on Thursday announced a budget overrun of $5.4 billion, or 36%, to $20.4 billion.

Origin's project partners are ConocoPhillips (COP) and China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. (0386.HK), or Sinopec.

Origin shares were down 2% at 0208 GMT and Santos Ltd. (>> Santos Limited), which is involved in another rival LNG project, was down 3.5% .

The share price declines also come after West Texas Intermediate crude settled 2.6% lower Thursday at US$102.54 a barrel.

The Origin venture in July gave the green light for construction of their project's first phase, which the Australian energy company said will cost $14 billion to complete. The initial phase will include building the first of two planned LNG processing units, or trains, and some infrastructure to support the second train.

A full two-train project is expected to cost $20 billion, Origin said at the time.

A spokesman for Santos wasn't immediately available for comment.

-By Ross Kelly, Dow Jones Newswires; 61-2-8272-4692; Ross.Kelly@dowjones.com

Stocks mentioned in the article : Origin Energy Limited, Santos Limited
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