Australia has signed a treaty with Timor-Leste to pursue joint development, exploitation and management of the Greater Sunrise gas fields.
The Treaty also draws the maritime border between Australia and Timor-Leste in the Timor Sea.
The special arrangement will see the transfer of certain offshore petroleum operations and areas from the current Joint Petroleum Development Area (JPDA) to Timor-Leste’s exclusive jurisdiction.
Established under the 2002 Timor Sea Treaty (TST), the JDPA is an area of shared Australian and Timor-Leste jurisdiction.
Other permits to be transferred to Timor-Leste’s exclusive jurisdiction include a portion of Australian exploration permit WA-523-P and production licences WA-18-L and AC/L5.
Under the provisions of the new treaty, the countries intend to set up the Greater Sunrise Special Regime to jointly develop the resource.
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The regime will also oversee the distribution of the upstream revenue between the two states.
As per an agreement reached by the parties, Timor-Leste is set to receive 70% of the upstream revenue in case the development of the Greater Sunrise fields takes place by means of a pipeline to a liquefied natural gas (LNG) processing plant in the country, while Australia will retain the remaining 30%.
Australia has also agreed to offer 80% of the profits to Timor-Leste, provided the development happens by means of a pipeline to an LNG processing plant in Australia.
In order to supervise the development of Greater Sunrise, a designated authority and a governance board will be set up.
Woodside Petroleum operates the Sunrise joint venture (JV) with a 33% interest.
The JV has two retention leases (NT/RL2 and NT/RL4) within the Australian jurisdiction of the fields, as well as two production sharing contracts (PSCs) for the JPDA portion.