Oil Search Sees Gobe Plant Operational This Week After PNG Quake
SYDNEY, March 20 (Reuters) - Australia's Oil Search Ltd said on Tuesday that it expects its Gobe processing plant and oil export pipeline in Papua New Guinea to be operational later this week, after a deadly earthquake hit last month.
Oil Search said the Gobe facility and its export pipeline were largely undamaged in the magnitude 7.5 quake that struck on Feb. 26.
The company said its condensate handling facilities, part of the giant PNG liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, were also ready to receive PNG LNG condensate once production at the Hides gas conditioning plant comes back on stream.
The Hides plant was shut down after the quake by operator ExxonMobil, which said earlier this month the PNG LNG project would be shut for about eight weeks for inspections and repairs.
Oil Search said it expects its central processing facility at Kutubu, another oil and gas field, to be "progressively restored from late March", while its Moran oil and gas field would take longer.
"The Agogo processing facility and the Moran 4, 6, 9 well pad, which are in the area most impacted by the earthquake, will require some repairs before production from the Moran field can recommence," Oil Search said in a statement, without giving a repair timeline.
At least 100 people were killed when the powerful quake hit the remote and rugged highlands three weeks ago, triggering landslides that buried villages and destroyed infrastructure.
(Reporting by Tom Westbrook in SYDNEY; editing by Richard Pullin)
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