Freeport LNG, the project advancing towards first output by the end of 2029 in Quintana Island in Texas, has received approval from the US Department of Energy for the export of Train 4 volumes to Non-Free Trade Agreement countries, opening the way for marketing to start.
Freeport LNG's fourth liquefaction Train is part of the company's existing natural gas liquefaction and LNG export facility being completed.
The company recently received approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to site, construct and operate its fourth Train.
Freeport LNG's Train 4 is expected to add more than 5 million tonnes per annum of LNG production to its existing project, increasing the total export capability of the 4-Train facility to over 20 MTPA.
About 13.5 MTPA of this capacity has been contracted under 20-year tolling agreements to Japanese utilities Osaka Gas and JERA Co. Inc., BP of the UK, South Korea’s SK E&S, while a fifth deal with Toshiba Corp. is currently being off-loaded by the troubled Japanese company.
There is also a sixth deal, a sales agreement for 500,000 tonnes per annum contracted to international commodities firm Trafigura in the form of a three-year accord starting in 2020.
“We appreciate the Department of Energy's swift approval, closely coupled with the recent FERC approval, which enables us to further advance our project development and marketing efforts for Train 4,” said Michael Smith, Chairman and Chief Executive of Freeport LNG.“Having DOE's approval marks another significant milestone for Freeport LNG, which brings us one step closer to our goal of moving ahead with Train 4 construction later this year,” added Smith.
Train 4 will come on stream in 2023. Freeport LNG's export facility currently consists of three liquefaction Trains, with Train 1 scheduled for commercial start-up in the third quarter of 2019, and full three-Train operations are anticipated by mid-2020.