Phoenix-CNOOC venture eyes PNOC as partner in natural gas plan in Batangas
Phoenix Petroleum Philippines Inc. yesterday said its planned joint venture firm with China National Offshore Oil Corp. (CNOOC) was pursuing talks to enlist Philippine National Oil Co. as a partner in their liquefied natural gas terminal project in Batangas.
PNOC over the past two years was the frontrunner in what was expected to be the replacement for the Malampaya natural gas project, supply from which is anticipated to start running low in the next several years.
After various foreign entities applied to PNOC to be partner for the LNG project, the state-run firm earlier stood down and energy officials said it was now interested only in participating in a similar endeavor at a maximum interest of 10 percent.
Phoenix said in a statement talks with PNOC had started after the Department of Energy last December issued a notice to proceed to the Phoenix-CNOOC joint venture firm Tanglawan Philippine LNG Inc., which was yet to be formally established.
China’s state firm is involved through its subsidiary, CNOOC Gas and Power Group Co. Ltd., which is that country’s biggest LNG importer and largest LNG terminal operator.
According to Phoenix, its board approved the proposed joint venture with CNOOC on Jan. 31.
“Representatives from Phoenix are now in talks with PNOC in hopes to secure a strategic alliance with the state-owned firm in its LNG Hub project,” the Davao-based firm said.
It said the planned joint venture was hoping to sign with PNOC a memorandum of understanding “in the coming weeks.”