ExxonMobil Papua New Guinea (PNG) is investigating reports of pipeline vandalism on its Angore gas pipeline construction project.
This comes as riots escalate in PNG’s Southern Highlands province, where protesters angry at the recent election results are calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Peter O’Neill.
Another main grievance is that landholders are yet to receive royalty payments from the government for ExxonMobil’s PNG LNG Project, which shipped its first cargo four years ago.
A state of emergency has been declared and Port Moresby has sent troops to the region to install calm.
The 11 km Angore pipeline is being built to connect the Angore gas field to the Hides conditioning plant.
According to Reuters, EMTV Online showed burnt out heavy machinery and a fire burning in a shipping container at the site in Angore.
ExxonMobil has released a statement saying production from the Hides plant will continue as normal.
Gas from the plant is sent via an 850 km pipeline to the PNG LNG plant near Port Moresby where it is chilled into LNG and exported.
The PNG LNG Project involves a two-train, 6.6 MMt/a LNG processing facility and an 850 km large diameter pipeline.
Joint venture participants include ExxonMobil subsidiary Esso Highlands as operator (33.2 per cent), Oil Search (29.0 per cent), PNG Government (16.6 per cent), Santos (13.5 per cent), Nippon Oil (4.7 per cent), Mineral Resources Development Company (2.8 per cent) and Petromin PNG Holdings Limited (0.2 per cent).