The official opening of one of the nation’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) processing facilities signals the beginning of decades of economic benefits for northern Australia.
Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Hiroshige Sekō, helped officially open the INPEX-operated Ichthys LNG Project’s onshore processing facilities at Bladin Point in Darwin today.
Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Matt Canavan attended the opening alongside Trade Minister Simon Birmingham and Northern Territory Minister for Primary Industry and Resources Ken Vowles.
Minister Canavan said the project, which has an estimated 40-year lifespan, represented the largest Japanese investment in Australian history and the largest overseas investment by a Japanese company.
“Today’s opening marks the beginning of decades of continued economic benefits for Australia, and the nation’s north in particular,” Minister Canavan said.
“The Ichthys LNG Project created thousands of jobs during its development and construction, and we are going to see ongoing employment, contracting and investment opportunities for generations to come, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
“The project is another strong link between Australia and Japan, delivering energy security for Japan while providing sustained economic opportunities for Australia. It is a great example of significant foreign investment creating positive outcomes at the local level.
The Ichthys LNG Project features some of the world's largest offshore facilities, linked to its onshore processing facilities near Darwin by the longest subsea pipeline in the southern hemisphere.
Around 70 per cent of LNG produced by Ichthys will be supplied to Japanese customers.
The project is scheduled to produce more than 10 per cent of Japan’s annual LNG imports – or around 8.9 million tonnes of LNG – at peak production.