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Feb 23, 2010 (AFP)-Heavy Industries said it signed a US$1.4 billion deal on Tuesday with another South Korean firm to develop a huge natural gasfield in military-ruled Burma.
Hyundai Heavy, the world’s largest shipyard, signed the contract with trading company Daewoo International to build offshore and onshore plants at the Shwe project off northwest Burma by March 2013. Daewoo International has agreed to supply gas from the field from May of the same year through a pipeline to China.
The project will produce 500 million cubic feet (15 million cubic metres) of gas per day for between 25 and 30 years. The field is estimated to hold between 4.5 trillion and 7.7 trillion cubic feet of gas. Hyundai Heavy will build a 40,000-ton offshore gas platform, a subsea production system, pipelines, an onshore gas terminal, a jetty and a supply base.
"The project will help to enhance the partnership between Hyundai Heavy and Daewooo International," Hyundai Heavy CEO Oh Byung-Wook said in a statement, adding that his company expects additional orders in Burma.
Burma, which has been ruled by the military since 1962, is under economic sanctions by the United States and Europe because of its human rights record and long-running detention of democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.
But their impact has been weakened as neighbours such as China, India and Thailand spend billions of dollars for a share of its oil and gas reserves.
A report by rights groups last June said South Korea’s government was failing to hold its corporations to account for abuses linked to natural gas development in Burma.
The report, by EarthRights International and the Shwe Gas Movement, said the gas project had already been linked to forced relocations and other human rights violations. Local people who criticised the work faced arbitrary arrest and detention, it said.