(EnergyAsia, March 17, Monday) — US major Chevron Corp said it and its partners will invest about US$3.1 billion to construct the shallow water Platong Gas II natural gas project in the Gulf of Thailand.

Due to start up in the first quarter 2011, Platong Gas II, located 200 km offshore, is designed to add 420 million cubic feet of natural gas per day processing capacity. The project will meet Thailand’s growing demand for gas.

Chevron, the operator, holds a 69.8% participating interest. Its partners are Japan’s Mitsui Oil Exploration Co Ltd (27.4%) and Thai upstream company PTT Exploration and Production Public Co Ltd. (2.8%).

“The Asia-Pacific region is poised to become the world’s most significant oil and gas consumer, with demand forecasted to grow by about 90% by 2030,” said Jim Blackwell, president of Chevron Asia Pacific Exploration and Production Co. “Chevron is well positioned with a robust queue of major projects across the region to help satisfy future demand.

“The Platong Gas II project alone has the potential to satisfy 14% of the natural gas used for power generation in Thailand. Platong Gas II is a milestone that builds on the 45-year relationship between Chevron and Thailand.”

Tara Tiradnakorn, president of Chevron Thailand Exploration and Production, said:
“Platong Gas II is a world-class natural gas project that will generate new jobs and revenue for the Kingdom, as well as provide a future source of energy for the Thai people and industry for decades to come.”

Chevron recently signed an agreement with the Thai Energy Ministry to increase its daily contract quantity of natural gas by 500 million cubic feet to 1.2 billion by 2012 from company-operated offshore blocks 10, 11, 12 and 13. Platong Gas II is expected to be the major source of this increase in production.

Last October, the company received 10-year lease extensions until 2022 for blocks 10 through 13. Chevron has ownership interests in these blocks ranging from 60% to 80%.

Chevron operates more than 195 platforms in the Gulf of Thailand with 2007 total average daily production of 138,000 barrels of oil and condensate (71,000 net) and 1.7 billion gross cubic feet of gas (916 million net).