Russian Far East plant on Sakhalin Island relies on de-bottlenecking rather an expansion

Thursday, 26 March 2020
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Russian natural gas company Gazprom said the 1,800th cargo departed from the Port of Prigorodnoye on Sakhalin Island in Russia’s Far East from the liquefaction plant that is marking its anniversary after being over-shadowed for the last few years by the larger Yamal facility in the Arctic region.

Gazprom said the latest Sakhalin shipment was lifted by the 135,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “Hyundai Aquapia”, 11 years after the first cargo departed on March 29, 2009.

The cargo was purchased by Korea Gas Corp.  and is scheduled to be discharged on March 30 at the South Korean terminal at Incheon.

The main buyers of Sakhalin cargoes are Japanese, South Korean and Chinese energy companies.

The shareholders in the plant are Gazprom with 50 percent plus one share Royal Dutch Shell 27.5 percent minus one share and Japanese trading houses Mitsui and Co. with 12.5 percent and Mitsubishi Corp. with 10 percent.

The rival Yamal LNG plant with output of 16.5 MTPA from three Trains is operated by independent Russian natural gas company Novatek and also has overseas investors in French major Total and China National Petroleum Corp.

The company is also developing the Arctic LNG II project on the Siberian Gydan Peninsula with shareholders, including Total and  from Chinese and Japanese companies.

A long-planned expansion at the Sakhalin plant and the construction of a third liquefaction Train has so far failed to take place.

However, Gazprom notes that regular de-bottlenecking and equipment adjustments over the past 11 years has seen output raised to more than 11 million tonnes per annum from the nameplate capacity of 9.6 MTPA.

LNG cargoes produced and marketed by operating company by Sakhalin Energy are supplied on a free-on-board basis and shipped by the company’s LNG carriers, “Grand Elena”, “Grand Aniva” and “Grand Mereya”.

Two other vessels, the “Amur River” and the “Ob River” carriers are used by the company under long-term charter agreements.


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