Eastern Corporation (ECU)

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Eastern Corporation (ECU) is a coal mining company with operations in New Zealand and Australia. Key projects are located at Bowen Basin, Queensland and Whareatea West, New Zealand. The company's Galilee Energy project in Queensland focuses on coal seam methane exploration. ECU was listed on the ASX on 15 February 1996. It entered into a joint venture agreement with Mitsui in June 2005 to pursue the exploration and development of coal in the Bowen basin.

Eastern plans to grow as an energy company with particular emphasis on developing its coal seam gas (CSG) project in Queensland’s Galilee Basin. The company provides investors with good value entry into coal seam gas. The Galilee Energy project (Eastern 68%) in central Queensland presents opportunities in the rapidly emerging CSG industry in Queensland as the company moves towards certification of gas reserves.

In a major advance towards project development, AGL Energy Limited, one of Australia’s leading energy companies, agreed in July 2008 to invest $37 million in the Galilee CSG project. The farmin agreement will see AGL taking up a 50 per cent interest in ATP 529P, located 80km north-west of the Barcaldine gas fired power station which is linked by a gas pipeline to Moomba and Brisbane. Eastern and AGL have agreed to a work program with AGL as the operator of the joint venture, and have signed a 10-year gas marketing agreement. The two-stage work program will comprise the Rodney Creek production pilot, expected to commence by November 2008, and, as a second stage, exploration and appraisal work.

As a large and experienced integrated energy company, AGL brings to the joint venture both capital and expertise in gas exploration, development, production and marketing. ATP 529P is one of two tenements, both highly prospective for gas production, held by Galilee Energy in the Galilee Basin. The gas in place in the two ATP’s is estimated to be greater than 20 TCF.

Galilee Energy now plans to focus on further exploration and development in the adjacent tenement, ATP 799P. In coal, Eastern is well established as a significant producer in the South Island of New Zealand, supplying domestic industrial customers from two mines, Cascade near Westport and Takitimu in the far south, and a coal blending and distribution facility at Timaru.

In September 2008, Eastern will commence coal deliveries from Takitimu to the Clandeboye plant of large dairy products producer Fonterra. The contract to supply up to 130,000 tonnes of coal per year is expected to result in a near doubling of Eastern’s New Zealand coal production and sales. Eastern Corporation (ECU) is planning further exploration and testing of a coking and thermal coal prospect at Whareatea West, near the Cascade mine. Discussions are under way with several potential joint venturers to progress the next stage of this project. ECU competes against Australian and overseas coal producers. Major competitors include BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto, as well as international and second-tier domestic producers. Major customers include steel works and power-generating companies.

Eastern Corporation (ECU) Products and Services

  • Exploration for coal and hydrocarbons

Eastern Corporation (ECU) Locations and Subsidiaries

Eastern Corporation Head Office
Level 2, 895 Ann Street,
Phone: (07) 3216 1155
Fax: (07) 3216 1199

Eastern Corporation (ECU) Share Price

Submitted by ASX Listed Company on 18 March, 2010 - 02:59