Woodside, BHP high on China gas

A deal with China to supply liquefied natural gas will be worth between $20 billion and $25 billion to Australia and Nortwest Shelf partners BHP and Woodside.

The North West Shelf venture has been selected as the sole supplier of gas to an LNG project in Guangdong province, commencing in 2005-2006. The contract will run for 25 years and provide more than 3 million tonnes of LNG each year.

Partners in the North West Shelf venture include two ASX-listed companies – Woodside Energy and BHP Billiton (petroleum division), as well as Shell, BP, Chevron and Japan Australia LNG. Shares in Woodside surged by 90 cents to $13.88 by mid-afternoon yesterday after the deal was announced, while BHP Billiton's share price rose to $9.03, 15 cents higher.