MEO Australia's (ASX: MEO) Tassie Shoal liquefied natural gas and methanol projects in the Timor Sea have had their Major Project Facilitation (MPF) status renewed until 31 December 2015.
The renewal by Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Anthony Albanese comes less than a week after the environmental approval for the LNG project was extended to 28 March 2017.
Together, the extensions are a clear signal of Government support and provide the clarity needed by prospective project partners to evaluate the projects.
"The Tassie Shoal Projects have the potential to provide substantial benefits to the Australian people via tax and PRRT revenue and export earnings," MEO managing director Jürgen Hendrich said.
MPF status will assist in expediting any additional project approvals in addition to the existing environmental approvals.
It ensures the Department of Infrastructure and Transport will, provide all information on approvals; coordinate relevant government processes; ensure prompt responses to issues raised by MEO; assist in identifying and accessing government programs.
Tassie Shoal LNG envisages a 3 million tonne per annum liquefied natural gas plant that is integrated with a 1.75 million tonne per annum methanol processing facility at the shallow waters of the Tassie Shoal.
While the project was originally born out of the idea of providing a processing option for the high CO2 content at the Evans Shoal gas field, MEO has also started looking into the possibility of using its own gas at Heron and Blackwood to feed the project.