Two relatively small oil and gas companies played an important role in the Elk-Antelope gas field: Interoil and Oil Search. Interoil was a small oil and gas company that acquired exploration licences for PNG oil and gas in 2005. The driving force at Interoil was its founder: Phil E. Mulacek, who announced in 2007 the discovery of a large gas field on the edge of the Gulf of Papua in the south of the country. “InterOil Corporation made the kind of announcement that investors were waiting for: exploration near the refinery had deposited a huge pool of natural gas potentially larger than the total consumption of fossil fuels by the United States in 2005. The size of the discovery was so large, Phil E. Mulacek, president and chief executive, informed an analyst that the simple control of his production was a kind of attempt to stop the Mississippi.  An agreement was reached between Interoil and the PNG government to travel to Diefore on one condition: Interoil had to work with a company experienced in the development and management of a gas field.  Shell and ExxonMobil were cited as potential partners when Interoil began trading.  Merrill Lynch Investment Bank (now Merrill (company) was also involved.[ 53] By the end of 2012, Interoil had failed to find a partner to reach a final investment decision (DFF) and was at risk of losing its licence.  One proposal suggested that the PNG government would become a 50 per cent shareholder instead of taking back the proposed capital of 22.3 per cent.  It was rejected because the government did not have the money and would not solve the expertise problem.
The French multinational Total SE is a major company in the oil and gas industry and has filled this gap by buying a 60% stake in gas leaking.  The Oil Search Company began trading at about the same time. It was already a participant in the PNG LNG project and expanded its interest by purchasing it in the Elk Antelope gas fields, and they bought the Pac LNG Group, which held a 22.8% interest in the gas fields and paid about $900 million to participate.