Germany Receives Third FSRU

Wednesday, 25 January 2023
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A third FSRU arrived in Germany on 20 January. The RWE-controlled FSRU Höegh Gannet arrived at Brunsbüttel’s Elbehafen port near Hamburg but did not carry the terminal’s commissioning cargo. 

This is to be supplied by ADNOC via the LNG carrier Ish later this month. Although the Höegh Gannet is Germany’s third FSRU arrival, only the one stationed at Wilhelmshaven was fully operational at the time of writing, our data and calculations indicated. 

The RWE-controlled FSRU Höegh Gannet arrived at Brunsbüttel’s Elbehafen port near Hamburg on Friday, 20 January 2023, our shipping data indicated.

The vessel thus marked Germany’s third FSRU arrival. However, the LNG terminal, of which the Hoegh Gannet will form an integral part, has yet to be commissioned.

The operator and owner of Elbehafen port, Brunsbüttel Ports GmbH, said that “a several-week phase of commissioning and trial operations” will have to be completed first before commercial gas flows could begin.

For instance, piping for warm process water to be pumped from a close-by industrial estate remains under construction.

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Commercial cargo

Nevertheless, the Höegh Gannet is scheduled to receive its first commercial cargo for the Brunsbüttel project via the ADNOC-controlled LNG carrier Ish, which carries a cargo of roughly 120,000m3.

ADNOC is the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company based in the United Arab Emirates.

The vessel left the Das Island plant on 10 January and is scheduled to meet with the Höegh Gannet on 28 January, according to our data. The Ish was in the process of passing Gibraltar at the time of writing.

Our data indicate the Höegh Gannet did not arrive in German waters carrying a commercial cargo.

It had undergone maintenance at the Damen shipyard in Brest, France before taking on a cooldown cargo at Mugardos in Spain on 11 January, our shipping data analysis further shows.

Following its arrival at Elbehafen, the Höegh Gannet was moved to an anchorage off Helgoland in the North Sea awaiting further developments. 

Fast-track development

The Brunsbüttel project partners have achieved the initial stages of the FSRU project in good time.

Plans to install an FSRU at Brunsbüttel began to become concrete in May 2022. The partners are RWE, Höegh LNG, Marine Service GmbH (a consultancy), Spanish LNG terminal operator Reganosa and Brunsbüttel Ports GmbH.

RWE also said it has partnered with energy players EnBW and Uniper for LNG supply.

Limited German capacity

The first FSRU to arrive in Germany was the Neptune, which arrived at the port of Lubmin in mid-December following a waiting period at the nearby port of Sassnitz in November.

However, the 145,000m3 Neptune cannot yet receive direct transshipments from conventional LNG carriers and developer DeutscheReGas has been employing the small-scale carriers Coral Furcata and Coral Favia as LNG shuttles. Cargo transfer is thus much slower.

The two small-scale carriers have been in the process of shuttling Lubmin’s inaugural cargo from the Seapeak Hispania to the Neptune since the first week of January, our data and calculations indicate.

The Seapeak Hispania’s cargo was supplied by Shell/Petronas-operated Idku LNG in Egypt.

Wilhelmshaven FSRU operational

As such, only the Wilhelmshaven FSRU project, which saw the arrival of the Hoegh Esperanza FSRU in mid-December, has been properly commissioned to date.

Apart from its commissioning cargo supplied through a re-export from Sagunto in Spain in December, which the FSRU carried itself, the Wilhelmshaven terminal has already received three deliveries in January via the Maria Energy, the Maran Gas Ithaca and the Diamond Gas Victoria.

All three cargoes were supplied by either Sabine Pass or Cameron LNG in the United States. A fourth cargo aboard the Angola LNG-sailed Malanje is due to arrive by end-January, according to our data. 

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