This week

LNG and gas markets look down
from on high as oil prices crash

The LNG and natural gas markets are taking no heed of the crashing oil market that has dropped more than $20 per barrel in a month, while the benchmark US Henry Hub natural gas price jumped to the highest level of 2018 along with other gas prices in Europe and Australia.

Latest News
Argentina plans to deploy a floating liquefied natural gas production hull at the port of Bahia Blanca in the second quarter of 2019 under an agreement with…
Indian LNG imports dropped 5.8 percent in October after six straight month of increases as shipments were received from nations such as Qatar, Angola and Nigeria, while…
While LNG imports to Japan rose last month to 6.53 million tonnes, the thermal coal purchases by the world’s largest LNG importer were even higher at 9.19…
US pipeline company Kinder Morgan and two equity funds are making progress on receiving permits to transform the existing Gulf LNG import terminal in Pascagoula in Mississippi…
Ten liquefied natural gas carriers from Australia, the Middle East and Africa are heading for Chinese import terminals and another dozen are waiting offshore for orders and…
TurkStream, the natural gas export pipeline from Russia to Turkey, has completed its first offshore phase across the Black Sea, while the second onshore phase will deliver…
MISC Berhad, the Malaysian shipping line with 29 LNG carriers, said LNG spot rates rose to a peak in the third quarter after a lacklustre start for…
Bangladesh is scheduled to receive its first cargo of the month on November 21 after two earlier November shipments were cancelled at the floating storage and regasification…
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has prepared a draft environmental impact statement for the mid-scale Jacksonville project in Florida proposed by Eagle LNG Partners to supply regional…
Japanese liquefied natural gas imports in October increased by 6.5 percent as shipments from the Middle East and Australia offset a drop in Asian cargoes as the…
BGC Partners of the US, a leading global brokerage and financial company, has completed the acquisition of Poten and Partners Group, a ship brokerage, consulting and business…

Bergen changes name

Nov 21 (LNGJ) - The Bergen Group, involved in the energy, industrial, maritime and defence sectors, has become the latest Norwegian company to change its name after oil and gas company Statoil became Equinor. Bergen is changing its name to Endur ASA when it completes its merger with Endur Holdings AS, scheduled for the middle of the first quarter of 2019. “The word ‘Endur’ is derived from the old Norwegian language expression ‘endurnyja’ which means ‘renewing’. Endur is also a word with various meanings, and in front of the word energy it means ‘lasting energy’. The owners of Endur Holding have within short time succeeded in establishing the Endur name as the name of an important supplier in the oil and gas market,” said the company.

Woodside Hub sale

Nov 20 (LNG) - Australian LNG producer Woodside has signed a long-term gas sale and purchase agreement with Perdaman Chemicals and Fertilisers of Western Australia for the supply of pipeline gas for a term of 20 years, primarily sourced from Woodside’s portfolio and proposed Scarborough development. The agreement is subject to a number of conditions and supply will commence between 2023 and 2025. “This is a significant domestic gas sale and represents another step towards the delivery of the proposed Burrup Hub,” said Chief Executive Peter Coleman. “The realisation of our vision for the Hub will ensure that the world-class North West Shelf and Pluto facilities on the Burrup Peninsula are positioned to meet both domestic gas and global LNG demand for decades to come,” he added.

LNG cargo deliveries

Nov 20 (LNGJ) - The 140,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Arctic Voyager” will deliver a cargo on November 22 to the Italian terminal offshore Tuscany from the Hammerfest plant in Norway operated by Equinor, according to shipping data. The 145,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “LNG Enugu” will deliver a cargo on November 23 to the Barcelona terminal in northeast Spain from the Nigerian export plant at Bonny Island. The 172,636 cubic metres capacity “Fedor Litke” is scheduled to deliver a cargo on November 24 to the Zeebrugge terminal in Belgium from the Yamal plant at Sabetta in Siberia. The 155,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “British Emerald” will deliver a shipment on December 1 to the Map Ta Phut terminal in Thailand from Atlantic LNG in Trinidad. The 160,500 cubic metres capacity vessel “Sonangol Etosha” will unload a cargo on December 2 at the Indian Dahej terminal, operated by Petronet, from the Angola plant in southwest Africa.

Balearia LNG engines

Nov 19 (LNGJ) - Spanish shipping company Balearia has begun retrofitting its “Napoles” ferry to be powered by liquified natural gas. The ferry, which operates on the Barcelona-Ibiza route, arrived at the Gibraltar Gibdock shipyard where it will be modified and have an LNG tank installed with a completion date set for February 2019. The two engines currently on the ship will be switched to dual-fuel LNG and diesel engines produced by the German-owned company, MAN Energy Solutions. Balearia said there were also plans for the retrofitting of its sister ship, the “Sicilia”, to have LNG capability.

Q-Flex for UK Nov 30

Nov 19 (LNGJ) - The 210,100 cubic metres capacity Q-Flex carrier “Al Ghariya” will deliver a cargo on November 30 to the UK South Hook import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales from Ras Laffan in Qatar, according to shipping data. The delivery was heading for the UK as the National Balancing Point benchmark natural gas price was at the equivalent of $9.05 per million British thermal units, while one of the main continental European prices, the Dutch Title Transfer Facility (TTF), was lower at around $8.65 per MMBtu.

More GTT tank orders

Nov 16 (LNGJ) - French maritime storage technology company GTT said it received an order from the South Korean shipyard of Hyundai Heavy Industries for the tank designs for two LNG carriers. GTT said each vessel would have capacity of 174,000 cubic metres and have been ordered by the Greek ship-owner TMS Cardiff. The tanks will be fitted with the Mark III Flex containment system and the vessels would be delivered at the end of 2020 and the beginning of 2021. “We are pleased to pursue our partnership of excellence with HHI shipyard and with ship-owner Cardiff which already owns four LNGCs equipped with GTT technologies and has nine LNGCs on order,” said Philippe Berterottiere, GTT Chairman and Chief Executive.

LNG carrier transfer

Nov 15 (LNGJ) - GasLog Partners, New York Stock Exchange-listed affiliate of Monaco-based GasLog LNG, said the partnership closed its acquisition from GasLog of all the shares in the LNG carrier “Methane Becki Anne”. The 170,000 cubic metres capacity ship with tri-fuel diesel-electric propulsion was delivered in 2010. “The vessel is currently on a multi-year time charter with a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell through March 2024. Shell has a unilateral option to extend the term of the time charter for a period of either three or five years,” said GasLog Partners.

Abu Dhabi LNG deals

Nov 14 (LNGJ) - The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) has agreed in principle to extend to 2040 its gas supply agreements, in coordination with the Adnoc LNG joint venture partners, Mitsui of Japan, BP of the UK and France’s Total. “The new gas supply agreements are scheduled to take effect from April 1, 2019, replacing  existing agreements, due to expire on March 31, 2019,” said Adnoc. The move is in line with the new integrated gas strategy in the United Arab Emirates that will sustain LNG production at the Das Island liquefaction facility. Adnoc LNG has signed seven term contracts for the supply of more than 4.2 million tonnes per annum of the fuel, mostly to Japan. The UAE last year exported a total of 5.59 million tonnes of LNG. “The LNG market is projected to grow at a robust pace, fueled by demand from Asia and developing countries who want access to a clean and affordable source of energy,” said Abdulaziz Alhajri, Head of Adnoc’s Downstream Directorate.

GTT order for Greeks

Nov 14 (LNGJ) - French LNG storage tank technology company GTT said it received an order from the South Korean shipyard, Hyundai Heavy Industries, for tank designs for a 174,000 cubic metres capacity LNG carrier on behalf of Greek ship-owner Thenamaris. “GTT will realize the design of the tanks of the vessel, which will be fitted with the Mark III Flex membrane containment system, a proven technology developed by GTT,” said the Paris-based company. The delivery of the ship from Hyundai is scheduled for the first quarter of 2021.

LNG cargo deliveries

Nov 13 (LNGJ) - The 137,230 cubic metres capacity carrier “LNG Rivers” is unloading a cargo on November 13 at the Huelva terminal in southwest Spain from the Bonny Island plant in Nigeria, according to shipping data. The 210,100 cubic metres capacity Q-Flex carrier “Umm Al Amad” will deliver a shipment on November 14 to the Pakistani Port Qasim import facilities, located east of Karachi, from the Ras Laffan plant in Qatar. The 155,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Gaslog Salem” will deliver a Qatargas cargo on November 18 to the Zeebrugge terminal in Belgium. The 138,088 cubic metres capacity vessel “Berge Arzew” will unload a shipment on November 18 at the Aliaga facility in Turkey from the Sonatrach-operated plant in Algeria.

   The 155,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “Gaslog Savannah” will deliver a cargo on November 20 to the Japanese Hachinohe terminal, owned by Nippon Oil, from the Woodside Petroleum export facilities at Dampier in Western Australia. The 160,400 cubic metres capacity carrier “Cubal” will deliver a shipment on November 28 to the Indian Dahej terminal, owned by Petronet, from the Angolan plant in southwest Africa. The 266,000 cubic metres capacity carrier Aamira will deliver a Qatargas cargo to the South Korean Incheon terminal on December 3.

US cargo for China

Nov 12 (LNGJ) - The first LNG shipment from the US since Beijing imposed a tariff on US imports has arrived on the 173,400 cubic metres capacity carrier “Ribera Duero Knutsen” from the US Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana operated by Cheniere Energy, according to shipping data. The vessel was unloading its cargo on November 12 at the Ningbo terminal in Zheijang province, operated by China National Offshore Oil Corp. The “Ribera Duero Knutsen” had departed Sabine Pass on October 10. This is the first US LNG cargo to be shipped to China since September 10.

ABS LNG tank plan

Nov 9 (LNG) - The American Bureau of Shipping, the US classification society, said it was joining forces with a finance company and Scorpius Space Launch Company (SSLC) on the “Space Tech4Sea” project to adapt composite technologies developed for the space industry to LNG shipping. The European-based project has attracted a grant of more than 1 million euros ($1.13 million) from the European Commission. The project aims to apply lighter composite technology as a competitive alternative in LNG marine fuel tank designs, principally for short sea shipping. “Existing LNG tank technology can make adoption of the fuel prohibitively expensive. This composite technology has proven itself in other industries,” said ABS Vice President for Global Gas Solutions, Patrick Janssens.

JGC LNG disputes

Nov 8 (LNGJ) - JGC Corp., the Japanese energy and LNG engineering contractor, said it had 220 billion yen ($1.93 billion) of outstanding LNG contracts at the end of the latest quarter, including Yamal LNG in Russia, the Coral FLNG project offshore Mozambique and the Ichthys LNG project in the Northern Territory of Australia. JGC said the Ichthys plant owned by Inpex Corp. of Japan and French major Total, was the subject of contract disputes that have gone to arbitration. JGC is part of a consortium with KBR of the US and Japanese firm Chiyoda Corp. that built the Ichthys plant. “Additional costs incurred due to the increase in service scope and other factors should be reimbursed by the client under the agreement,” said JGC. “Some parts of the costs are disputed by the client and these unsettled claims are currently the subject of an arbitration process,” added JGC.

   Another Ichthys project dispute concerns costs incurred by JGC and its partners from taking over a combined-cycle, gas-fired power plant design and construction adjacent to the LNG plant from the original Australian subcontractor who walked away from its subcontract agreement. “Our claims regarding these costs are currently the subject of an arbitration process,” stated JGC.

Inpex gas sales drop

Nov 7 (LNGJ) - Inpex Corp, the Japanese oil and gas company and developer of the Ichthys LNG plant in Australia that delivered its first cargo in October to its own Naoetsu import terminal in Japan, said net energy sales decreased by 2.2 percent to 438.2 billion yen ($3.87Bln) in its fiscal first-half to the end of September. “Net sales of crude oil increased by 42.0Bln yen, or 12.7 percent, to 372.9Bln yen, and net sales of natural gas decreased by 52.8Bln yen, or 47.7 percent, to 57.9Bln yen,” said Inpex. Net income for the six months increased by 12.9 percent compared with the previous year to 34.0Bln yen ($300.7M) versus 30.15Bln yen in 2017. Inpex said it would expect to boost income in the second half with revenue generated from Ichthys LNG through March 2019.

Q-Flex LNG cargo for UK

Nov 7 (LNGJ) - The 216,000 cubic metres capacity Q-Flex carrier “Al Thumama” will deliver a cargo on November 21 to the UK South Hook import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales from Ras Laffan in Qatar, according to shipping data. The delivery was heading for the UK as the National Balancing Point benchmark natural gas price was at the equivalent of $7.90 per million British thermal units, while one of the main continental European prices, the Dutch Title Transfer Facility (TTF), was higher at around $7.95 per MMBtu.

LNG cargo deliveries

Nov 6 (LNGJ) - The 210,100 cubic metres capacity Q-Flex carrier “Al Sheehaniya” was unloading a cargo on November 6 at the Indian Hazira terminal near Mumbai from Ras Laffan in Qatar, according to shipping data. The 217,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “Al Kharsaah” will unload a Qatargas shipment on November 11 at the Dahej terminal in India, operated by Petronet. The 172,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Boris Vilkitsky” will deliver a cargo on November 16 to the Montoir-de-Bretagne terminal in Western France from the Yamal plant in Russia. The 155,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “British Emerald” will unload a shipment on December 1 at the Map Ta Phut terminal in Thailand from Atlantic LNG in Trinidad. The 155,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “Gaslog Santiago” has just departed from Point Fortin in Trinidad and is scheduled to deliver a shipment to an as yet unnamed Chinese terminal on December 3.

US cargo for UK Nov 8

Nov 5 (LNGJ) - The 174,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Pan Europe” is scheduled to deliver a US cargo on November 8 to the UK Dragon LNG import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales, owned by Royal Dutch Shell and Petronas of Malaysia, according to the port authority. The carrier lifted its cargo on October 19 from the Sabine Pass export plant in Louisiana. The delivery was heading for the UK as the nation’s National Balancing Point benchmark natural gas price was at the equivalent of $7.95 per million British thermal units, while one of the main continental European prices, the Dutch Title Transfer Facility (TTF), was higher at the equivalent of $8.10 per MMBtu.

US LNG exports rise

Nov 2 (LNGJ) - US LNG exports increased last week to seven shipments, five from Sabine Pass in Louisiana and two from Cove Point, according to the weekly natural gas report from the Energy Information Administration. An eighth LNG carrier was lifting a cargo from Sabine Pass through November 1. “The two cargoes exported from the Cove Point terminal were the first exports since the facility resumed LNG production after three weeks of scheduled maintenance,” said the report. The EIA also noted that the average January 2019 futures contract price is trading at a lower premium to the average spot price than last year at this time.

   Price differences between the spot price and the futures price on the New York Mercantile Exchange “indicate limited economic incentives for injections into working gas” storage. “During the most recent storage week, the average natural gas spot price at the Henry Hub was $3.26 per MMBtu, and the Nymex futures price of natural gas for delivery in January 2019 averaged $3.33 per MMBtu, 7 cent per MMBtu higher than the spot price. A year ago, the January contract was 37 cents per MMBtu higher than the spot price,” it said.

CFO for Flex LNG

Nov 1 (LNGJ) - Flex LNG, the Norwegian LNG carrier owner with a growing fleet, has named Harald Gurvin as its Chief Financial Officer from January 2019. Flex, whose shareholders include trusts controlled by Norwegian shipping magnate John Fredriksen, said Gurvin brings extensive shipping, finance and capital market experience. He has served as CFO of New York Stock Exchange-listed Ship Finance International since March 2012. From 2008 until 2012, Gurvin served as Senior Vice President at Ship Finance. Prior to joining Ship Finance in 2006, he spent seven years with the global shipping group of Fortis Bank in Oslo, focusing on shipping and offshore finance.

TransCanada investment

Nov 1 (LNGJ) - TransCanada Corp., the pipeline company that will transport feed-gas to LNG plants such as LNG Canada being developed by Royal Dutch Shell and its Asian partners in British Columbia, said it would move forward with a $1.5 billion expansion of its NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd. (NGTL) System to connect existing and new supply to incremental intra-basin market demand. “The NGTL System continues to expand as parties require and contract for greater pipeline capacity to meet the growing demand for clean-burning natural gas from domestic and export markets,” said Russ Girling, TransCanada’s President and Chief Executive. “This new investment brings the capacity expansion programs underway on the NGTL System to more than $9 billion,” added Girling. TransCanada noted that shippers had already executed 377 million cubic feet per day of firm receipt services from November 2021 that will connect incremental Montney shale gas and Deep Basin supply to the system.

Dunkirk LNG sold

Oct 31 (LNGJ) - Fluxys, the Belgian natural gas network operator and owner of the Zeebrugge LNG import terminal, has along with fund partners closed the purchase of an additional 35.76 percent stake in the French Dunkirk LNG terminal for an undisclosed sum. Fluxys, acting with consortium partners AXA Investment and French bank Credit Agricole Assurances, bought the stake held by French major Total and the utility EDF. Fluxys now owns 60.76 percent of the Dunkirk facility, one of France’s four import terminals, and the funds hold the balance of the shares. “Through the acquisition the Dunkirk LNG terminal is now part of the Fluxys group,” said the Belgian company of the terminal that started operations in January 2017. “Fluxys will join its LNG experience with the expertise of the Dunkirk terminal teams to move business forward, achieve top-notch operational, safety and environmental standards, and chart new commercial territory both in large-scale and small-scale LNG,” said Pascal De Buck, Chief Executive of Fluxys.

BP LNG sales

Oct 30 (LNGJ) - BP said natural gas, LNG and liquids contract sales jumped to $5.76 billion in the third quarter compared with $4.10Bln in the same three months a year ago. The UK major’s overall replacement cost profit before interest and tax for the third quarter and nine months was $3.47Bln and $10.16Bln respectively, compared with $1.24Bln and $3.2Bln for the same periods in 2017. “Our focus on safe and reliable operations and delivering our strategy is driving strong earnings and growing cash flow,” said Chief Executive Bon Dudley. “ Operations are running well across BP and we’re bringing new, higher-margin barrels into production faster through efficient project execution,” he added. “We have made very good progress with our acquisition from BHP (US shale assets) and expect to complete the transaction tomorrow (Oct 31). This will transform our position in the US Lower 48 and we expect it to create significant value for BP,” stated Dudley.

Chubu market move

Oct 30 (LNGJ) - Chubu Electric Power Co., whose LNG procurement is handled by Jera Co Inc., a joint venture with Tokyo Electric Power Co., has merged its own regional domestic power and gas subsidiaries to better adapt to the deregulated Japanese market. Chubu Electric Power and Chubu Gas have formed a new company called CS Energy Services to be based in Toyohashi City in Aichi Prefecture. “CS Energy Services will fully harness the business foundation and management resources that Chubu Electric and Chubu Gas have garnered to provide competitive gas and electricity bundled plans based on a framework of security and stable supply,” said Chubu. CS Energy will particularly target corporate customers in the Higashi Mikawa region in Aichi Prefecture and the Seien region in Shizuoka Prefecture.

Nakilat profits rise

Oct 29 (LNGJ) - Qatar Gas Transport Co, also known as Nakilat, reported nine-month net profits of 659 million Qatari riyals ($181M), an increase of 8.5 percent compared with the same period of 2017. Nakilat’s core LNG shipping businesses was helped by an operational partnership with Royal Dutch Shell in the early years, though the vessels are now under Qatari control. Its fleet of almost 70 wholly and jointly-owned LNG vessels includes the Q-Flex and Q-Max carriers with up to 266,000 cubic metres capacity and four liquified petroleum gas carriers. “Nakilat’s improved financial performance bears testament to the company’s ongoing emphasis on enhancing efficiency, increasing productivity and pursuing growth strategies, without compromising safety and quality,” said Chief Executive Abdullah Fadhalah al-Sulaiti.

LNG cargoes for China

Oct 29 (LNGJ) - The 210,000 cubic metres capacity Q-Flex vessel “Al Kattiya” is scheduled to unload a shipment on November 1 at the Dalian import terminal operated by PetroChina in the Liaoning Province of northeast China from the Ras Laffan plant in Qatar, according to shipping data. The 172,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Beidou Star” will deliver an Australian shipment on November 4 from Gorgon LNG, operated by Chevron Corp., to the Tangshan terminal in Hebei province owned by PetroChina.

   The 147,100 cubic metres capacity vessel “Ibra LNG” will deliver a cargo from Oman on November 5 to the PetroChina Dalian facility. The 177,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Spirit of Hela” is delivering a cargo on November 8 to the Qingdao terminal, operated in Shandong province by Sinopec, from the Papua New Guinea export plant.

   The 173,400 cubic metres capacity vessel “Ribera del Duero Knutsen” is scheduled to unload a shipment on November 11 at Sinopec’s Tianjin terminal, the nearest port to the capital Beijing, from the US Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana, owned by Cheniere Energy. The 216,200 cubic metres capacity carrier “Al Gattara” is delivering a Qatargas cargo on November 15 to the Dalian terminal of PetroChina.

Vitol cargo for UK

Oct 26 (LNGJ) - Global commodities trading firm Vitol will import a US LNG cargo to the UK import terminal at South Hook in the port of Milford Haven on October 31 onboard the 160,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Yari LNG”. The South Hook terminal, jointly owned by Qatar Petroleum and ExxonMobil, will make available terminal capacity rights to regasify the Vitol shipment from the Sabine Pass pant in Louisiana.

Sembcorp Marine loss

Oct 26 (LNGJ) - Sembcorp Marine, the Singapore maker of offshore platforms and with a ship repair yard catering for LNG carriers, posted ninth-month revenues of S$3.97 billion (US$2.82Bln) and a third-quarter loss of S$29.8 million compared with a profit of S$100.7M in the third quarter of 2017. The company is expected to increase its participation in the LNG sector after completing the acquisition of LNG technologies from buying Sevan Marine of Norway. On a quarterly basis, Sembcorp turnover for the third quarter was S$1.17Bln versus S$729 million in the same three months of 2017. “The higher revenue was due to higher percentage recognition of the two Transocean drillships, the “Johan Castberg FPSO”, the “Shell Vito FPU” and the “Karish FPSO” projects,” it said. “The majority of recent new offshore oil and gas orders were for production projects. This trend is expected to continue and Sembcorp is responding to an encouraging pipeline of enquiries and tenders for innovative engineering solutions,” added the company.

Equinor gas benefits

Oct 25 (LNGJ) - Equinor, the Norwegian state-backed energy company and operator of the Hammerfest LNG plant in northern Norway, said third-quarter net income more than doubled to US$1.98 billion compared with $819 million in the same three months of last year. Net operating income was $4.59 Bln versus $1.09Bln in the year-ago period. “The significant increase was primarily due to higher liquids and gas prices, increased gas volumes and a net reversal of impairments compared to 2017,” said President and Chief Executive Eldar Saetre.

Egyptian LNG for UK

Oct 24 (LNGJ) - The 174,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Maran Gas Spetses” is scheduled to deliver an Egyptian cargo on October 31 to the UK Dragon LNG import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales, owned by Royal Dutch Shell and Petronas of Malaysia, according to shipping data. The carrier departed on October 23 from the Shell-operated Idku export plant, located east of the port of Alexandria. The delivery was heading for the UK as the nation’s National Balancing Point benchmark natural gas price was at the equivalent of $8.50 per million British thermal units, while one of the main continental European prices, the Dutch Title Transfer Facility (TTF), was slightly lower at the equivalent of $8.45 per MMBtu.

Aker earnings rise

Oct 24 (LNGJ) - Norwegian energy and LNG project engineering company Aker Solutions posted third-quarter net income of 155 million Norwegian crowns ($19 million) compared with 124M crowns in the same three months a year ago. Revenues amounted to 6.54 billion crowns ($790M), a rise of 21 percent compared with the 5.41Bln crowns logged in the year-ago quarter. Orders totaled 5.9Bln crowns in the quarter, bringing the backlog to 36.1Bln crowns. “Our order intake in the quarter more than doubled versus the same period a year earlier and we're seeing high tendering activity in all our markets,” said Luis Araujo, Chief Executive of Aker Solutions. The company said it was bidding for contracts totaling about 45Bln crowns. “About two-thirds of these are in the subsea area, where the company expects key projects to be awarded over the next six to 12 months, including in Brazil, the UK, Africa, Australia and Asia Pacific,” added Aker.

IMO moves on fuel

Oct 23 (LNGJ) - The International Maritime Organization said it had moved forward on its strategy of reducing greenhouse-gas emissions from ships with use of cleaner fuels such as LNG by approving a programme of follow-up actions on its global cap on sulfur from 2020. The IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) approved the follow-up programme at a meeting in London. “The programme of follow-up actions is intended to be used as a planning tool in meeting the timelines identified in the initial IMO strategy, which was adopted in April 2018,” said the IMO. Commending the committee’s approval of the follow-up actions, IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim said the programme “sets a clear signal on how to further progress the matter of reducing GHG emissions from ships up to 2023.”

China-Total LNG deal

Oct 22 (LNGJ) - French energy major Total and China National Offshore Oil Corp. have signed an amendment to their existing sale and purchase agreement for liquefied natural gas supply. They have increased the contract volume from 1 million tonnes per annum to 1.5 MTPA of LNG, sourced from Total’s global portfolio and have extended the term of the contract to 20 years. The first long-term contract was signed in 2008, with an annual volume of 1 MTPA for a period of 15 years. “We are delighted to strengthen our partnership with CNOOC to expand our presence in the Chinese LNG market, which grew by 50 percent over the first half of 2018, and will continue to drive the increase of LNG demand over the next decade,” said Philippe Sauquet, Total’s President of Gas, Renewables and Power.

Jerat Trading rated

Oct 22 (LNG) - Jerat Trading, the LNG and energy trading arm created by the merger of Jera Co. Inc. and French firm EDF Trading, has been assigned an “A” credit rating from the Japanese agency, Rating and Investment Inc. Jerat is now two-thirds owned by Jera Co. Inc. and EDF Trading holds one third of the shares. “R&I cites this rating as a reflection of the creditworthiness of the entire Jera Group, which is also rated ‘A’ with stable outlook,” said Jerat. Jera Co. Inc. itself was formed by the merging of the LNG procurement activities of the two largest Japanese utilities, Tokyo Electric Power Co. and Chubu Electric.

US LNG and prices

Oct 19 (LNGJ) - US LNG exports increased in the past week as five LNG carriers departed from the Sabine Pass liquefaction plant in Louisiana while one additional vessel was lifting a cargo. “The Cove Point liquefaction terminal did not have any LNG exports last week,” noted the report from the Energy Information Administration “However, the facility has completed its scheduled maintenance, and it resumed receiving natural gas feedstock deliveries by pipeline,” said the EIA. The benchmark Henry Hub natural gas spot price was last at $3.28 per million British thermal units. “Spot prices mostly rose as many regions of the country experienced significantly colder-than-normal temperatures,” added the EIA. At the Chicago Citygate, prices were last at $3.41 per MMBtu and at the Algonquin Citygate serving Boston prices went up 87 cents to $3.92 per MMBtu. “At the Transcontinental Pipeline Zone 6 trading point for New York City, prices increased 47 cents to $3.40 per MMBtu,” it said. Tennessee Zone 4 Marcellus prices increased 26 cents to $3.08 per MMBtu.

Indian gas price down

Oct 18 (LNGJ) - The Indian Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas has fixed its latest half-year ceiling price for domestic natural gas output for the period from October 2018 to the end of March 2019 at US$3.36 per million British thermal units on a gross calorific value (GCV) basis. The price for the same October-to-March period issued a year ago had amounted to US$6.30 per MMBtu for gas produced from discoveries in deep water, ultra-deep water and high-pressure areas.

BHP reports on LNG

Oct 17 (LNGJ) - BHP Billiton, the Australian commodities company with substantial oil and gas assets, said its natural gas production increased by 5 percent in the third quarter to 112 billion cubic feet, reflecting increased volumes in Trinidad, an LNG producer. The company also has a 17 percent stake in the oldest Australian LNG export plant, the Northwest Shelf facility in Western Australia, operated by Woodside. BHP said that the Greater Western Flank project to extend LNG production at that facility was now 95 percent complete. BHP is also selling its onshore US shale assets. “Completion of the sale of BHP’s interests in the Eagle Ford, Haynesville and Permian onshore US oil and gas assets to BP America is expected to occur by the end of October 2018,” it stated.

European LNG cargoes

Oct 16 (LNGJ) - The 155,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “British Emerald” was unloading a cargo on October 16 at the UK Isle of Grain LNG terminal in Kent from the Trinidad export plant at Point Fortin in the Caribbean, according to shipping data. The 138,100 cubic metres capacity vessel “Berge Arzew” will unload a shipment on October 18 at the Aliaga facility in Turkey from the Arzew plant in Algeria. The 140,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Arctic Discoverer” will deliver a cargo on October 21 to the Dutch Gate terminal in Rotterdam from the Hammerfest plant in Norway operated by Equinor. The 147,200 cubic metres capacity carrier “Arctic Lady” will deliver a Norwegian cargo on October 23 to the Montoir-de-Bretagne terminal on the West Coast of France. The 172,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “Boris Vilkitsky” will unload a shipment on October 24 at the Bilbao terminal in northwest Spain from the Yamal plant in Russia where Spanish utility and natural gas supplier Naturgy Energy Group has a long-term contract. The 160,400 cubic metres capacity carrier “Melanje” will unload a shipment on October 25 at the Dutch Rotterdam terminal from the Angolan export plant at Soyo in southwest Africa.

Tohoku LNG sales deal

Oct 15 (LNGJ) - Tohoku Electric, the Japanese utility with 7.6 million individual and corporate customers in six prefectures on Honshu Island, said it signed an agreement to receive cargoes from the onshore Mozambique LNG export project in southeast Africa being developed by US company Anadarko Petroleum with feed-gas from the Area 1 licence block of the Rovuma Basin. The deliveries will amount to 280,000 tonnes per annum for 15 years from the start of 2020s. The shipments will be on a delivered basis whereby the price includes the shipping costs. Anadarko has a 26.5 percent stake in Mozambique Area 1 and Japanese trading house Mitsui holds 20 percent. Three Indian companies, Bharat Petro Resources, ONGC Videsh and Oil India Ltd., hold a further 30 percent. The other stakeholders in Area 1 are the Thai energy company PTT Exploration and Production and the Mozambique state-owned oil and gas firm ENH.

Q-Flex LNG for UK

Oct 15 (LNGJ) - The 216,200 cubic metres capacity Q-Flex carrier “Al Gharrafa” will unload a cargo on October 20 at the UK Milford Haven import terminal in Wales from the Ras Laffan plant in Qatar, according to the Port Authority. The delivery was heading for the UK as the National Balancing Point benchmark natural gas price was at the equivalent of $8.70 per million British thermal units, while one of the main continental European prices, the Dutch Title Transfer Facility (TTF), was higher at around $8.90 per MMBtu.

US LNG and spot prices

Oct 12 (LNGJ) - US LNG exports amounted to four shipments for a second week, a relatively low figure because of maintenance activities at the Cove Point plant in Maryland. The four vessels departed from the Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana while a fifth carrier was lifting a cargo at the facility through October 11, according to the weekly report from the Energy Information Administration. “There were no LNG exports from the Cove Point liquefaction terminal last week and no natural gas feedstock deliveries by pipeline as the facility continues its scheduled maintenance,” the EIA noted. The report said Henry Hub natural gas spot prices rose 11 cents to $3.37 per million British thermal units. “This week marks the fourth week of a Henry Hub price increase,” explained the report. “Persistent low storage levels, coupled with high power burn because of warmer-than-normal temperatures and record nuclear outages, have contributed to higher Henry Hub prices,” it said. Prices also increased at other markets. At the Chicago Citygate, prices rose 19 cents to $3.37 per MMBtu, while at the Pacific Gas and Electric Citygate in Northern California prices jumped 27 cents to $3.77 per MMBtu.

LNG-powered event

Oct 11 (LNGJ) - AET, one of the leading petroleum and chemical tanker owners and operators, has named its first LNG dual-fuelled Aframax vessels “Eagle Brasilia” and “Eagle Bintulu” in a ceremony at Samsung Heavy Industries shipyard in Geoje, South Korea. “Both vessels have been taken on long-term charter by Shell International Trading and Shipping Co, primarily for operations in the Atlantic Basin,” said AET, a subsidiary of the Malaysian shipping line MISC Berhad. “The vessels are equipped with conventional single-screw propulsion with a two-stroke main engine, three auxiliary engines and two auxiliary boilers, all equipped for LNG dual-fuel capability,” added AET. The LNG fuel is supplied through two type-C tanks of 850 cubic metres each arranged on the main deck aft port and starboard. The vessels are designed to receive fuel from LNG bunkering vessels via ship-to-ship transfer.

US natural gas forecasts

Oct 11 (LNGJ) - The US expects natural gas inventories to end October at the lowest levels for this time of year since 2005. “Natural gas storage inventories will total 3.3 trillion cubic feet at the end of October,” said the latest energy and winter fuel forecasts from the Energy Information Administration. “This level would be 14 percent lower than both the 2017 end-of-October level and the five-year (2013-2017) average for the end of October,” added the EIA. The report forecasts that Henry Hub natural gas spot prices would average $2.99 per million British thermal units in 2018 and $3.12 per MMBtu in 2019. Winter heating and energy prices will also rise. “US household expenditures for most major home-heating fuels will be higher this winter compared with last winter. Average increases vary by fuel and natural gas expenditures are forecast to rise by 5 percent,” said the EIA.

LNG Canada sales deal

Oct 10 (LNGJ) - Buyers in Japan are seeking LNG Canada volumes. Japanese utility Toho Gas Co. has signed a preliminary sales agreement with a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corp. for 300,000 tonnes per annum of LNG shipments for 15 years from fiscal 2024 from the Royal Dutch Shell-led LNG Canada project in British Columbia. The proposed sale of the LNG Canada volumes is on an ex-ship (DES) basis whereby Mitsubishi arranges LNG shipping to the Toyo import terminal in Japan. A second utility, Tokyo Gas, has signed a similar preliminary deal with Mitsubishi for LNG Canada volumes amounting to 600,000 tonnes per annum. Toho Gas is the third-largest city gas provider in Japan after Tokyo Gas and Osaka Gas.

Scheduled LNG cargoes

Oct 10 (LNGJ) - The 177,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Spirit of Hela” was unloading a cargo on October 10 at the Chinese Qingdao terminal owned by Sinopec from the Oceania nation of Papua New Guinea whose export plant is operated by ExxonMobil. The 75,500 cubic metres capacity Med-Class carrier “Cheikh Bouamama” will deliver a shipment on October 12 to the Cartagena terminal in southeast Spain from the Skikda plant in Algeria operated by Sonatrach. The 210,100 cubic metres capacity vessel “Al Ruwais” will deliver a shipment on October 14 to the Port Qasim facilities in Pakistan from the Ras Laffan plant in Qatar.

The 141,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “LNG Akwa Ibom” will unload a cargo on October 15 at the Indian Dahej terminal near Mumbai from the Bonny island plant in Nigeria. The 176,300 cubic metres capacity carrier “Rioja Knutsun” will deliver a US shipment on October 16 to the Huelva terminal in southwest Spain from the Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana, owned by Cheniere Energy. The 177,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “LNG Lagos II” will deliver a Nigerian cargo on October 17 to the Marmara Ereglisi terminal in Turkey.

The 210,000 cubic metres capacity Q-Flex carrier “Al Nuaman” is scheduled to deliver a Qatargas cargo on October 20 to the Belgian Zeebrugge terminal. The 150,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Ob River” will unload a shipment on October 20 at the Japanese Mitzushima terminal owned by Nippon Oil from the Russian Sakhalin Island plant.

Pluto LNG contract

Oct 9 (LNGJ) - Woodside Petroleum, the operator of the North West Shelf and Pluto LNG plants in Western Australia, said it had selected US LNG engineer Bechtel Inc. as the preferred contractor for the proposed expansion of its single-Train Pluto facility. Woodside is proposing the construction of a second processing Train with capacity of up to 5 million tonnes per annum. Woodside Chief Executive Peter Coleman said expanding the Pluto plant was key to realising the company’s vision for the Burrup Hub. “Expanding Pluto LNG will provide the necessary infrastructure to commercialise Western Australian gas resources for years to come,” said Coleman. “We look forward to progressing the Train 2 concept definition work and continuing to build our relationship with Bechtel,” he added. A final investment decision on the expansion is due by 2020 and Train 2 could be on stream by 2024.

LNG cargo deliveries

Oct 8 (LNGJ) - The 160,500 cubic metres capacity carrier “Sonangol Etosha” is scheduled to unload a cargo on October 10 at the Indian Hazira terminal, operated by Shell India, from the Anglo LNG plant in southwest Africa. The 148,300 cubic metres capacity vessel “LNG Imo” will deliver a shipment on October 12 to the French Montoir-de-Bretagne facility on the Atlantic Coast from the Nigerian plant on Bonny Island. The 147,200 cubic metres capacity vessel “Arctic Princess” will unload a cargo on October 12 at the Huelva terminal in southwest Spain from the Hammerfest plant in Norway operated by Equinor. The 160,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Asia Vision” is scheduled to unload a shipment on October 15 at the Himeji import terminal in Japan from the Wheatstone export plant in Western Australia operated by Chevron Corp. The 165,500 cubic metres capacity vessel “Meridian Spirit” is scheduled to arrive on October 17 at the US export plant at Cove Point in Maryland to lift a cargo following the facility’s scheduled shut-down for maintenance. The 140,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Arctic Voyager” will deliver a Norwegian cargo on October 18 to the Salvador plant in the northeast Brazilian state of Bahia. The 160,500 cubic metres capacity vessel “Sonangol Sambizanga” will unload an Angolan shipment on October 25 at the Mina Al Ahmadi import facility in Kuwait.

US LNG and prices

Oct 5 (LNGJ) - US LNG exports declined in the past week to four ship loads, all from the Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana, versus five cargoes the previous week. “No LNG vessels departed from Cove Point in Maryland last week because the facility is undergoing scheduled maintenance,” said the Energy Information Administration in its weekly report. “The facility has not received any natural gas feedstock pipeline deliveries since September 21,” it noted. The EIA also reported that Sabine Pass owner Cheniere Energy had filed a request with regulators for commissioning activities on Train 5. “The first LNG export cargo from Train 5 is expected before the end of this year,” said the EIA, taking Sabine Pass output to 22.5 million tonnes per annum from 18 MTPA. That’s as US natural gas spot prices jumped at most locations on concerns over falling storage levels. Henry Hub spot prices rose from $3.13 per million British thermal units to $3.26 per MMBtu. “Net injections to working gas totaled 98 billion cubic feet (Bcf) for the week,” said the EIA. “Working natural gas stocks are 2,866 Bcf, which is 18 percent lower than the year-ago level and 17 percent lower than the five-year (2013-2017) average,” it added.

US LNG cargo for UK

Oct 4 (LNGJ) - The 174,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Maran Gas Spetses” is scheduled to deliver a US cargo on October 8 to the UK Dragon LNG import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales, owned by Royal Dutch Shell and Petronas of Malaysia. The carrier departed on September 13 from the US Sabine Pass export plant in Louisiana, owned by Cheniere Energy. The delivery was heading for the UK as the nation’s National Balancing Point benchmark natural gas price was at the equivalent of $9.10 per million British thermal units, while one of the main continental European prices, the Dutch Title Transfer Facility (TTF), was slightly higher at the equivalent of $9.15 per MMBtu.

NYK charter to Total

Oct 3 (LNGJ) - Japanese shipping company Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK Line) signed a contract with a subsidiary of French energy major Total to charter a newbuild LNG carrier for seven years with an optional extension period of one year. NYK said the new vessel with capacity of 174,000 cubic metres capacity would be built in South Korea by Samsung Heavy Industries and delivered in 2021. “NYK will continue to provide flexible and optimal LNG transport options that meet customers’ diversifying needs and continue the company’s efforts to contribute to a stable supply of LNG as environment-friendly energy,” said the Japanese company.

Russian LNG fuel plan

Oct 2 (LNGJ) - Russian natural gas company Gazprom has held a ceremony marking the start of construction of the first LNG filling station for trucks near the town of Okulovka on the new Moscow-St. Petersburg highway, known as the M11. Gazprom is building a network of LNG and natural gas filling stations in cooperation with the Russian state highways company to encourage trucking companies to switch to cleaner gas fuel from diesel. “The conversion of trucks to natural gas will help improve the environmental situation in transit cities and towns and cut down transport costs due to fuel savings,” said Vitaly Markelov, Gazprom Deputy Chairman.