8 July 2002 – The Trans Asean Gas Pipeline (TAGP), could earn Indonesia up to $1bn in revenue from gas sales, according to Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro.

Speaking after the opening session of a meeting of energy ministers from the ten-member regional association Asean last weekend, Purnomo said that with 100 trillion cubic feet of uncommitted reserved gas, Indonesia will play a leading role in the TAGP. He said that the submarine gas pipeline, extending from West Natuna in the South China Sea to Singapore, turns out $300m a year.

A similar project will be commissioned in the next two months between West Natuna and Malaysia, expected to turn out around the same amount for Indonesia, he said. Next year another $300m worth of gas will be channelled every year from South Sumatra to Singapore, he added.

He said there are 11 potential gas points in Asean that could be included in the TAGP project. Four of the 7 points already developed are located in Indonesia using a pipeline network of 4500 km.

Cross border and domestic pipeline projects already operational and to be completed in the not too distant future include: Malaysia-Singapore completed in 1991; Yadana-Yetagun in Myanmar-Ratchaburi in Thailand operational in 1998 and 2000; West Natuna-Singapore, operational in December 2000, Camago-Malampaya of Philippines operational in 2001; West Natuna-Duyong of Malaysia to be operational in October; and Malaysia-Thailand in joint development area and South Sumatra-Singapore to be completed in 2003.

The entire projects are estimated to cost $7bn financed by private and state companies, Purnomo said.

The Asean ministers also agreed to co-operate in the development of infrastructure to avert the energy crisis and to support acceleration of the regional economic development. The agreements include development of Asean Power Grids to integrate power infrastructure of the member countries, the Asean Forum on Coal to intensify coal trade and mining, and co-operation in technology and promotion of renewable energy sources.