Energy Transfer made the Lake Charles LNG statement in its latest earnings as it also moves to complete its $37.7 billion merger with the Williams Companies.
The agreed Energy Transfer-Williams combination creates the third-largest energy company in North America and one of the five largest in the world.
It is now also the partner of the Shell-BG entity that will emerge from the Anglo-Dutch giant's takeover of BG of the UK for $70Bln.
Shell will inherit BG's long association with Lake Charles as an import terminal and now an export plant.
The Lake Charles terminal is one of the oldest in the US, having been certified by the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) since 1977. BG has been an LNG importer there since 1982.
Energy Transfer, based in Dallas, has a controlling stake in the Lake Charles terminal and the export project. BG is also both a stakeholder and the main customer.
The FERC has already issued a draft environmental impact statement for the transformation of Lake Charles to produce and export 16.5 million tonnes per annum of LNG.
This issuance started a 90-day countdown period in which other federal agencies are required to complete their review of the liquefaction project and issue any agency authorizations. That decision deadline is November 12, 2015.
"The FERC authorization for the liquefaction project is expected to be issued soon," Energy Transfer said.
"With the expected emphasis on capital discipline and overall cost, Energy Transfer continues to believe that Lake Charles LNG is one of the most attractive pre-final investment decision projects for both Royal Dutch Shell and BG Group.
"As a result, the project remains on track to receive FID in 2016, with construction to start immediately thereafter and first LNG exports anticipated in late 2020," Energy Transfer declared in its latest earnings.
The proposed Lake Charles project includes the construction, modification and operation of the terminal and pipelines in Louisiana, Arkansas, and Mississippi.
Energy Transfer and its subsidiary companies own and operate around 71,000 miles of US natural gas, natural gas liquids, refined products and crude oil pipelines.
The Texas company made its project statement as it reported third-quarter earnings in which it posted net income attributable to partners of $293 million for the three months compared with $188M for the 2014 period.
As regards its takeover of the Williams Companies, Energy Transfer expects that transaction to be completed in the first half of 2016.
Williams has its own LNG export project connections. The Pacific Connector Gas Pipeline project, a 232-mile line extending from Malin to Coos Bay, Oregon, is one of the main Williams assets.
Williams and Veresen Inc. of Calgary, Canada, are proposing the PCGP to serve the Jordan Cove LNG export project in Oregon.
In the wider LNG picture in North America, the new Energy Transfer becomes a main player in providing feed-gas for many US and Canadian export ventures, analysts said.