Australian LNG: restocking the North West Shelf

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Report summary

Australia’s North West Shelf LNG project needs more gas. Its supply fields are entering decline and liquefaction capacity will be available from 2021. The NWS joint venture is looking to toll third-party gas through the existing liquefaction infrastructure and has recently proposed non-binding key terms. The NWS backfill schedule neatly aligns with an expected shift from an oversupplied to an undersupplied LNG market in 2023/4. Wood Mackenzie believes there are options available that are cost competitive with most pre-FID projects globally. However, the lack of equity alignment between the phases will be a significant hurdle. Agreement within the NWS joint venture on tariff structures and levels may also be difficult. Wood Mackenzie believes a tolling tariff below US$2.50/mmbtu but above US$1.00/mmbtu will be needed for a project to be economically resilient. An alternative to tolling would be an integrated development, but risk-sharing through unitisation would involve complex M&A.

What's included

This report contains

  • Document


    PDF 238.70 KB

Table of contents

  • Executive Summary
    • Competitive economics
    • NWS likely to move towards a tolling model – Browse the frontrunner
    • Appendix
    • Four of the leading backfill options
    • Browse – Woodside’s favoured option
    • Scarborough – the only option operated by a non-NWS partner
    • Clio/Acme – Chevron’s small-scale option
    • Orthrus-Maenad and Geryon – further tie-ins give upside potential
    • Economic assumptions

Tables and charts

This report includes 7 images and tables including:


  • LNG production and capacity at NWS LNG
  • Four of the leading options
  • Value of each upstream option delivered to Japan
  • LNG production from each upstream option
  • Breakeven cost of gas FOB from the North West Shelf


  • Participation in the NWS LNG plant and the leading upstream options
  • Assumed development options

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