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Origin releases Exploration and Production report for December Quarter

Tuesday, Jan 31, 2012

Origin Energy Limited (Origin) today released its Quarterly Production Report for its Exploration and Production business for the quarter to 31 December 2011, reporting production of 29 petajoules equivalent (PJe) and sales revenues of $198 million.

Australia Pacific LNG, Origin's joint venture with ConocoPhillips and Sinopec, continued to reach major milestones with its coal seam gas to liquefied natural gas project during the quarter.

On 17 November 2011, Australia Pacific LNG signed a binding agreement with Kansai Electric Power Company for the sale and purchase of approximately 1 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) of LNG for 20 years. In addition, Australia Pacific LNG signed a non-binding Heads of Agreement with Sinopec on 12 December 2011 for the sale of a further 3.3 mtpa of LNG through to 2035, and additional equity taking Sinopec's ownership interest in Australia Pacific LNG from 15 per cent to 25 per cent. These agreements were converted to binding agreements on 20 January 2012, completing the marketing of Australia Pacific LNG's second LNG train.

Origin Chief Executive Officer Upstream, Mr Paul Zealand, said "Production for the December Quarter was 29 PJe, compared with 31 PJe in the prior corresponding period. Planned maintenance shutdowns at the Otway and Kupe gas plants and commencement of the BassGas gas Mid Life Enhancement contributed to the decrease in production, as did a lower share of production from Australia Pacific LNG following dilution of Origin's interest from 50% to 42.5% as part of the completion of the Subscription Agreement with Sinopec in August 2011.

"Sales volumes were 31 PJe, compared to 36 PJe in the prior corresponding period, however higher crude oil prices and a modest increase in average gas prices helped to drive sales revenues 5% higher to $198 million," Mr Zealand said.

During the December Quarter, Origin successfully carried out planned major maintenance shutdowns at the Kupe Gas Plant in New Zealand and the Otway Gas Plant in Victoria. The Yolla Mid Life Enhancement Project at BassGas in Victoria also commenced during the quarter. Phase 1 will involve the addition of accommodation modules and offshore compressions, and is expected to result in the platform being offline until late in the June Quarter 2012.

source: Origin Energy

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