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Our work in Timor Leste

We have been in present in the country since 2006, and today we operate in the Exploration & Production sector, holding stakes in four offshore blocks.


Timor-Leste was declared an independent nation on 20 May 2002 after voting to secede from Indonesia on 25 October 1999. Until 2018, both Timor-Leste and Australia claimed sovereignty over the Timor Sea area that includes Bayu-Undan, previously known as the Joint Petroleum Development Area (“JPDA”). In 2019, Australia and Timor-Leste ratified a treaty to establish maritime boundaries in the Timor Sea (“Maritime Boundaries Treaty”). Timor-Leste has sole jurisdiction over the ownership and management of certain hydrocarbon fields in the former JDPA area, including Bayu-Undan and Kitan.

Development and exploration of wells

In 2008 we made a significant oil discovery in the JPDA permit 06-105 with the Kitan-1 and Kitan-2 exploratory wells located in the Timor Sea. We started development of the Kitan oil field in April 2010 and began production in October 2011. In 2013 we were awarded a new exploration permit on a 662 square kilometre area located within the Joint Petroleum Development Area (JPDA) which is managed by East Timor together with Australia.  In the JPDA we have identified a series of oil prospects which, in the event of new discoveries being made, will be exploited in synergy with the nearby Kitan production field, operated by us and entered into production in October 2011, just three and a half years after the announcement of the commercial discovery. The field ceased production in 2015. Finally, we are operators of the JPDA PSC 11-106 (now called PSC 19-11) with a stake of 40.53% in a joint venture formed by INPEX Offshore Timor-Leste Ltd with 35.47% and Timor GAP PSC 19-11 Unipessoal Limitada (TimorGap) with 24%.

The liquids and gas Bayu Undan field (Block JPDA 03-13) started-up in 2004 and produced 114 kboe a day in 2019. Liquid production is supported by three treatment platforms and an FSO unit. Production of natural gas is carried by a 500-kilometer long pipeline and is treated at the Darwin liquefaction plant which has a capacity of 3.6 mmtonnes of year of LNG (equivalent to approximately 177 bcf/y of feed gas). LNG is sold to Japanese power generation companies under long-term contracts.

Encouraging local development

Our initiatives in the countries we work in are based on an integrated approach involving local communities and partners, sharing our skills and funds with them. In line with the UN's Sustainable Development Goals, our initiatives help provide access to energy, water and sanitation, diversify the economy, give education and professional training, protect the landscape and improve health services for communities. In East Timor we are running initiatives to diversify the economy (in line with SDGs 2, 8 and 10).