(EnergyAsia, December 6 2011, Tuesday) — Australia’s Cougar Energy said it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Indonesian mining company PT Medco Energi Mining Internasional to look into jointly identifying and developing underground coal gasification projects.

The partners have agreed to assess and identify coal deposits in Indonesia for application of underground coal gasification (UCG) technology, and to prepare a preliminary study for their commercial development. The MOU also provides for the potential formation of a joint venture for development of these projects.

Jakarta-based MedcoEnergi is a subsidiary of publicly-listed PT Medco Energi Internasional Tbk with interests in domestic and international oil and gas operations, power generation and the development of downstream industries.

MedcoEnergi and Cougar Energy have identified an opportunity to supply cheap clean power in Indonesia using local coal resources, which would potentially supplement MedcoEnergi affiliate’s current power generation capacity of around 200MW.

According to Cougar Energy, the MOU is a significant addition to its plans for expansion and growth of its UCG businesses in China, Mongolia and Indonesia.