Fortescue, the world’s fourth largest iron ore producer, has entered the Western Australia (WA) unconventional gas space with an investment in Oil Basins Ltd., reported Australian Associated Press (AAP).
As the global unconventional gas market gains momentum, activity in the WA petroleum sector is heating up with natural gas discoveries in the area by energy giants like ConocoPhillips and Chevron (NYSE: CVX).
Located in the Pilbara region of Western Australia with close proximity to Asia and India, Fortescue Metals Group has invested $4.2 million for an 18% stake in oil and gas explorer Oil Basins. Oil Basins has a portfolio of conventional and unconventional gas and has a project in the Canning Basin in the Kimberley region.
Funding will be used by Oil Basins Ltd. for capital requirements associated with Canning Basin assets and to help expand the company’s portfolio of oil and gas assets.
“As the largest State in Australia, Western Australia occupies 33% of our continent’s land mass – with 80% of the State’s population living within 30 kilometres of the coast,” noted Kevin Skipworth, the WA Government’s Agent General to Europe in a press release in September. “This presents a significant opportunity for investment in exploration and development in the unconventional gas sector across WA,” he continued.
Oil Basins Ltd. holds a portfolio of both conventional and unconventional oil and gas assets and is involved in exploration for oil and gas in the offshore Gippsland Basin waters of south-eastern Australia, the onshore Canning Basin of Western Australia and the offshore Carnarvon Basin waters of Western Australia.