In this issue

 

Our North American editor in New York

The Administration of President Donald Trump is taking an interest in the Alaska LNG project with US Vice-President Mike Pence meeting Alaska Governor Bill Walker and officials during a stop-over and the venture itself formally applying on April 17 to receive regulatory permits. 

The US Rio Grande LNG project development company in Texas run by former Royal Dutch Shell senior executive Kathleen Eisbrenner has signed a definitive agreement to become a listed company on the Nasdaq global exchange through a reverse takeover. 

Our North America editor in New York

Kinder Morgan, one of the largest US pipeline companies, and Colorado-based DCP Midstream have signed a letter of intent for DCP to participate in the development of the proposed Gulf Coast Express Pipeline Project to ship Permian Basin natural gas to the Texas Gulf Coast and its LNG projects. 

Our Europe editor

Norwegian company Global LNG Services (GLS), a developer of floating liquefaction hulls, said it planned to work with Siemens of Germany and Sembcorp Marine of Singapore on projects, including one on the US Gulf Coast.

Gaztransport and Technigaz (GTT), the French maritime storage tank specialist, said first-quarter revenues fell almost 3 percent to 56.8 million euros ($62.4M) as new orders were gained for four floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) vessels and one conventional LNG carrier. 

Skangas, the Norwegian liquefied natural gas supplier and facility operator, has named Kimmo Rahkamo as its new chief executive in succession to Tor Morten Osmundsen. 

Our Asia-Pacific editor

Japanese liquefied natural gas imports stayed in the high end at more than 8 million tonnes for March, in line with the volumes purchased in the same month a year ago as prices rose and power generation companies opted to buy more thermal coal. 

One of the largest pension funds in Canada has agreed to acquire more than a third of the shares in the main LNG import terminal in South America, the GNL Quintero facility in Chile. 

Our Europe editor

Sonatrach, Algeria’s state energy company, and France’s Total have signed a comprehensive agreement and announced “the amicable settlement of outstanding differences” between the two companies as the Algerians seek to end their underperformance in the liquefied natural gas sector and in pipeline gas as well. 

JX Nippon and Hokkaido Gas are latest companies to take advantage ofthe deregulation process

Our Asia-Pacific editor

The Japanese city-gas retail market, involving some of the largest LNG importers such as Tokyo Gas and Osaka Gas, is now almost fully liberalized and has already become a market worth up to US$30 billion a year. 

Our Europe editor

While the Zeebrugge LNG import terminal in Belgium again saw a decline in the utilisation rate with fewer large carriers unloading in 2016, there was a surge in small-scale activities including re-loadings by smaller LNG carriers and more truck distribution. 

A multi-sector industry coalition aimed at accelerating the widespread adoption of liquefied natural gas as a marine fuel has added three new member companies from the US, India and Japan. 

Our Europe editor

The France-based International Group of Liquefied Natural Gas Importers (GIIGNL) said global LNG trade last year recorded a growth rate of around 7.5 percent, returning to a robust pace experienced before 2011. 

The Port of Rotterdam and a Dutch energy body called the National LNG Platform plans to start a joint study that focuses on opportunities to develop liquefied natural gas from bio-methane extracted from waste for use in the port itself. 

News Nudges

Cameron LNG stays on track

The Sempra Energy head of infrastructure businesses, Joseph Householder, said the US Cameron LNG export project in Louisiana remained on track after experiencing some weather-related construction delays. Householder said the California-based utility and energy company and its French and Japanese partners, Engie, Mitsui and Mitsubishi were committed to the current Cameron schedule for the first of three liquefaction Trains to be on stream by early 2018. “The commitment of each of our partners and customers to get the project finished and into operation is completely there,” Householder told a meeting of analysts.


Egyptian gas supply increases

BP of the UK said it had started natural gas production from the first two fields of the West Nile Delta development in Egypt. The West Nile Delta venture and the Zohr gas project in the East Mediterranean are expected to lessen current Egyptian dependence on LNG to meet domestic demand. The project was delivered eight months ahead of schedule and the first gas was delivered to Egypt’s national grid. “The commissioning of all nine wells of the development’s first two fields and ramp up to stable operations has now been completed,” said BP.


Clean Energy makes choice

Clean Energy Fuels Corp., the LNG and gas fuel company and station network owner on the US West Coast, said it appointed Frank Meyer as President of its compression subsidiary. Clean Energy, based in Newport Beach in California, said Meyer brought 24 years of leadership experience after serving in a variety of roles.