Novatek, the Russian natural gas company and operator of the Yamal LNG export plant in northern Siberia, reported that its own share of cargo sales on international markets had dropped my more than 25 percent in 2020.
The company said third-quarter natural gas sales volumes, including volumes of LNG sold, amounted to an aggregated 16.56 billion cubic metres, representing a decrease of 0.8 percent compared with the prior year.
Novatek’s quarterly LNG volumes sold on international markets dropped 27.6 percent and amounted to the equivalent of 2.20 Bcm (1.63 million tonnes) versus 3.04 Bcm in the 2019 quarter.
Novatek is the largest independent natural gas producer in Russia and in December 2017 entered the global LNG market by starting up the Yamal LNG project.
Novatek’s Yamal plant has three liquefaction Trains on stream, each with nameplate capacity of 5.5 million tonnes per annum.
A smaller fourth Train at Yamal is currently being completed and will produce 900,000 tonnes per annum, taking overall production to 17.4 MTPA.
French energy company Total and China National Petroleum Corp. are the other main shareholders in the Yamal plant. Total additionally owns a 19.4 percent stake in the Novatek company.
Novatek’s upstream activities are concentrated mainly in the prolific Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Region, which is the world’s largest natural gas producing area and accounts for about 80 percent of Russian natural gas output.
The company added that nine-month LNG sales dropped 29.6 percent to 7.12 Bcm compared with 10.11 Bcm in the same 2019 period.
Natural gas volumes sold in the Russian Federation in the third quarter rose 5.1 percent and totaled 14.36 Bcm versus 13.66 Bcm in the same three months of 2019.
Russian Federation pipelines sales in the first nine months of the year were down 1.1 percent to 47.03 Bcm.
“As of the end of September, Novatek had 1.5 Bcm of natural gas, including LNG, and 743,000 tons of stable gas condensate and petroleum products in storage or transit and recognized as inventory,” said the company.
“The decrease attributable to volumes sold on international markets was mainly due to the decrease of Yamal LNG shareholders’ share, including Novatek’s share, of LNG volumes sold on the spot market, and a corresponding increase in Yamal LNG direct sales under long-term contracts,” explained Novatek.