Italy's Eni SpA could take over Chevron's stake in and operatorship of the Indonesia Deepwater Development (IDD) gas project by mid-2023, a senior Indonesian energy ministry official said on Feb. 7.

"Currently Eni is working, and so far, so good," Tutuka Ariadji, director general of oil and gas at Indonesia's Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, said on the sidelines of the India Energy Week conference.

"So maybe in the middle of this year we can finish the business matters. So far the progress is good," Ariadji said.

The IDD project, located in the Makassar Strait, involves the Bangka, Gendalo and Gehem gas fields.

Chevron has a 62% interest in the Bangka project and about 63% in the Gendalo-Gehem project.

Eni is already a partner in the project, along with China's Sinopec.

The ownership transfer is crucial for Indonesia, which is pinning its hopes of boosting gas production to 12,000 million standard cubic feet per day (mmscfd) by 2030 on resuming development at long-stalled gas projects including the IDD.

Chevron announced in January 2020 that it was scaling down ambitions for natural gas extraction from the project, saying its second stage was "not able to compete for capital in Chevron's global portfolio."