Ministry reveals gas revenue for first time

ASEAN+ July 18, 2012 00:00

By Eleven Media

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Myanmar govt earned over $16 billion during 2006-2007, 2011-2012 fiscal years


Myanmar’s Energy Ministry has for the first time unveiled to the public its revenue from the Yadana and Yedagun petroleum projects in the Gulf of Mataban in a move to reform and show transparency in administration.
The government received entitlements, royalties, a value of shares, transport fees, transit fees, training and education funds and income taxes from the oil and gas projects. 
Revenue from off-shore petroleum projects in the gulf was the main source of income for the government, but it was unclear for a long time whether or how much the country actually earned from the projects and where the money went.
Many international economists who monitored Myanmar’s economy felt the income had gone into the pockets of military generals in the previous regime rather than into the national treasury. 
The Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE) benefited from the 15-20 per cent of profits. The government earned more than US$16 billion (Bt505 billion) from the gas projects during the 2006-2007 and 2011-2012 fiscal years, according the Energy Ministry report.
The Yadana and Yedagun projects started oil and gas sales in 1998 and 2000 respectively. Yadana started making profit in the 2003-2004 fiscal year and Yedagun in fiscal 2006-2007.
Myanmar earned more than $2 billion from the projects in 2006-2007, $2.4 billion in 2007-2008, $2.8 billion in 2008-2009, $2.6 billion in 2009-2010, $2.9 billion in 2010-2011 and $3.6 billion in 2011-2012, totalling more than $16 billion.
The Yadana and Yedagun projects are a joint-venture investment between foreign companies and Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise. France’s Total owns shares of 31.24 per cent, the US’s Unocal 28.26 per cent, Thailand’s PTTEP 25.50 per cent and MOGE 15 per cent in 
the Yadana natural gas project, while Malaysia’s Petronas owns 40.75 per cent, MOGE 20.45 per cent, Japan’s Nippon 19.40 per cent and Thailand’s PTTEP 19.40 per cent shares in the Yedagun project.
In 2013, Myanmar will earn 60 per cent of revenue from the Shwe and Zawtika projects, which will export gas to China and Thailand, an official at the ministry said.
Myanmar also stands to earn $6.9 billion a year from a Chinese gas pipeline project as a “right of way” fee for the pipeline being installed across the country, plus $1 per tonne of oil as a transit fee. The country will also get a portion of gas and oil for local consumption.
The Energy Ministry said oil and gas were exported to foreign countries as Myanmar previously did not need natural gas for local consumption. 
Foreign currency earned from the projects were spent on building infrastructure for the development of the country, it said. 
From now on, oil and gas for local consumption would be a first priority. Value-added products would be manufactured if the oil and natural gas are sufficient for local consumption, the ministry said.