News Release
Aug. 24, 1999


Charlotte, N.C. -- Three construction crews working with more than 95,000 tons of steel and 47,000 pieces of pipe have started building Australia’s first major competing pipeline, the Eastern Gas Pipeline, in a $297 million (AUD$450 million) program spanning just over 12 months.

Duke Energy International (DEI) today launched construction of the project, one of Australia’s leading infrastructure developments for 1999/2000.

DEI General Manager Mark Landseidel said the 495-mile (792km) pipeline was being built in five major construction sections and involved three crews of about 600 workers. Gas will be flowing by the time of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.

Landseidel said the Eastern Gas Pipeline had the potential to re-shape industry in metropolitan and regional centres in New South Wales and Victoria.

"This will help spur industrial growth through creation of a more competitive environment in the energy industry. For the first time, there will be genuine choice which creates the opportunity for new retailers to enter the market, similar to what we now see in the electricity industry," he said.

Landseidel said these retailers could offer the market more innovative and competitive services. Customers were encouraged not to sign long-term agreements as changes in the industry over the next 12 months would result in new gas supply options.

"The Eastern Gas Pipeline would also enhance security of gas supply for both NSW and Victoria," he said.

The pipeline will link the Gippsland basin gas fields in Bass Strait with regional and metropolitan industrial centres including Wollongong, Sydney and Newcastle.

DEI is the owner, builder and operator of the Eastern Gas Pipeline project. The company is the international development and asset management unit of Duke Energy, a global energy company with industry-leading technical and operating expertise. DEI develops, owns and operates energy projects including natural gas and electric assets, as well as marketing and trading operations throughout the Asia Pacific, Europe and South America.

Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) is a global energy company with more than $29 billion in assets. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., the company reaches into more than 50 countries, producing energy, transporting energy, marketing energy and providing energy services. In the United States, Duke Energy companies provide electric service to approximately two million customers in North Carolina and South Carolina; operate interstate pipelines that deliver natural gas to various regions of the country; and are leading marketers of electricity, natural gas and natural gas liquids. Additional information about the company is available on the Internet at:

Contact: Bryant Kinney
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24 Hour Phone: (704) 382-8333