Vitol signs firm supply deal with US Delfin floating LNG venture offshore Louisiana and takes project stake

Wednesday, 13 July 2022
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The US Delfin floating LNG export project proposed for offshore Louisiana has finalized a binding sale and purchase agreement with the US subsidiary of global commodities firm Vitol.

The deal was between Delfin Midstream Inc. and Vitol Inc. and also includes “strategic investment” by Vitol in the US export project.

Under the SPA, Delfin will supply 500,000 tonnes per annum of LNG on a free-on-board (FOB) basis for 15 years at the Delfin Deepwater Port to be established 40 nautical miles off the coast of Louisiana.

“The SPA is indexed to Henry Hub benchmark. The agreement is valued at approximately $3 billion in revenue over 15 years,” said a statement.

Dudley Poston, Chief Executive of Delfin, said that recent events had accelerated the need for a wider array of potential buyers to source reliable low-cost energy from the safety of the US at “compelling” prices.

“After evaluating multiple projects and running an extensive diligence process, Vitol’s decisions to invest demonstrates the strong trust they have in our ability to deliver a reliable source of LNG,” added Poston.

Delfin added that it had signed other accords and term sheets that are being finalized into fully termed supply agreements.

Modular project

The company declared that as modular project requiring between 2 MTPA and 2.5 MTPA of long-term contracts to begin construction, Delfin is on schedule to make final investment decision on the first FLNG vessel by the end of 2022.

“We are delighted to conclude this agreement with Delfin,” said Pablo Galante Escobar, Global Head of LNG and European Gas and Power at Vitol.

“Global LNG demand is experiencing tremendous growth and Vitol continues to strengthen its position to safely and reliably deliver cost effective, flexible solutions to our customers around the world,” added Escobar.

Vitol’s commitment and investment grade rating will help Delfin on its path to financial close of this exciting project,” he stated. 

Delfin has completed the engineering and design phase of the venture for the vessels being built at South Korea’s Samsung Heavy Industries shipyard and the liquefaction equipment and technology is being provided by Kansas-based company Black & Veatch.

UTOS pipeline

At the outset of the project planning Delfin had purchased the UTOS pipeline, the largest natural gas pipeline in the Gulf of Mexico, and submitted its deepwater port licence application way back in 2015.

The UTOS pipeline is the only 42-inch pipeline in the GoM and was formerly owned and operated by Enbridge Inc.

Delfin then proposed to activate the formerly abandoned offshore pipeline for the FLNG project and construct new connecting pipelines, a compressor station and associated facilities.

Wouter Pastoor, Chief Operating Officer of Delfin, explained that the company had completed permitting work with a positive record of decision from the Maritime Administration and had been granted its Department of Energy export licence.

“Delfin has completed front-end engineering and design with Samsung and Black & Veatch which puts us on pace to execute our project this year and to commence operations in 2026,” he stated.

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