In this issue

 

Our Europe editor

Russian natural gas company Novatek said Spanish energy company Gas Natural Fenosa would be one of the first customers to receive cargoes from the Yamal liquefied natural gas export project in Arctic Russia when it starts commercial operations. 

Stolt-Nielsen, the Norwegian-listed shipping and storage company, said it ordered two 7,500 cubic metres capacity liquefied natural gas carriers with options for three similar ships as it builds a small-scale portfolio to serve projects in areas such as the Italian Island of Sardinian and Scotland. 

Japanese energy company Inpex said its central processing facility for the Ichthys liquefied natural gas project had arrived in Australian waters off the Northern Territory after being towed for 34 days from a shipyard in South Korea. 

Our North America editor in New York

The Mexican subsidiary of Sempra Energy of the US, owner of the Cameron LNG export project in Louisiana, and Canadian pipeline company TransCanada have started work on the $2-billion Sur de Texas venture to transport shale gas under the Gulf of Mexico from South Texas to the Mexican city of Tuxpan and to power plants around the country. 

Mexico, the largest US LNG and pipeline natural gas importer, will launch a contract system on July 1 for natural gas pipeline capacity reservations as part of its transition to a fully competitive market. 

Our North America editor in New York

Venture Global LNG, the company developing two liquefaction and export plants in Louisiana, has now raised more than $360 million in financing, attracting high-end investors to its latest equity offering. 

CEO Dudley pins hopes on African FLNG and natural gas projects in Indonesia and Egypt

Our Europe editor

BP Chief Executive Bob Dudley said the first pillar of the UK major’s strategy recognises that oil and gas will be important for decades as he listed vital projects he is pressing ahead with, including a floating LNG venture to be developed offshore West Africa and other LNG and gas ventures in Indonesia and Egypt. 

Our North America editor in New York

Jordan Cove LNG project, the liquefaction and export venture for the northwest of the US being carried forward by two merging Canadian companies, has joined the Washington DC-based industry group, the Center of Liquefied Natural Gas for support in the regulatory process. 

Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass LNG export plant in Louisiana sent out three fewer cargoes compared with the record 16 shipments logged in the previous month, according to the latest data showing US deliveries to nine different countries at lower prices, including three to the Middle East and one to Thailand. 

Our Asia-Pacific editor

Inpex Chief Executive Toshiaki Kitamura acknowledged that the Japanese company’s Ichthys liquefied natural gas project near Darwin in Australia’s Northern Territory was behind schedule by several months and the shipping of the first LNG cargo could take place by the end of 2017 or early 2018. 

Australian company Santos, a stakeholder in three Asia-Pacific liquefied natural gas production plants, said it received further positive results from the Muruk 1 gas exploration well being drilled in the Papua New Guinea Highlands to help underpin PNG LNG plant expansion. 

Chevron Corp., the operator of the Gorgon LNG plant on Barrow Island in Western Australia, said one of its three Trains has been shut until mid-June because of a technical fault as its newest Wheatstone venture continues with its commissioning process. 

Our Asia-Pacific editor

Chiyoda Corp. the Japanese energy engineering company working on liquefaction projects such as Yamal LNG in Russia and Cameron LNG in Louisiana, recorded an annual loss of more than $360 million as it installed a new management team to recover from problems at a subsea market subsidiary. 

Japanese government figures show that the average delivered price of spot liquefied natural gas shipments arriving in Japan was higher at an average $5.90 per million British thermal units in April compared with $5.80 per MMBtu in April 2016. 

News Nudges

Armenia gas fuel lead

Armenia’s position as the world’s largest user of gas-fueled vehicles as a proportion of cars, trucks and buses on the road was highlighted during a visit to the former Soviet state by Alexey Miller, Chairman of Russian natural gas giant Gazprom. Miller noted that Russian gas exports to Armenia amount to 1.9 billion cubic metres per year as the country has no energy resources of its own. “Gazprom expressed its appreciation for a robust use of natural gas in different economic sectors, including transportation. At present, around 80 percent of vehicles in the country run on natural gas,” said Gazprom.


GTT LNG storage order

GTT, the French LNG maritime storage technology company, said it received an order from Hyundai Heavy Industries of South Korea to equip a new LNG carrier with its Mark III Flex containment system. Hyundai's shipyard based in Ulsan will build the 180,000 cubic metres capacity vessel for the Norwegian shipping company Norspan LNG (Knutsen). Delivery is scheduled for 2019. The Knutsen fleet contains 10 large-scale LNG carriers in service and one on order. These LNG carriers are all equipped with GTT containment systems.


Mexico bid round ends

Mexico has awarded 10 out of 15 licences for exploration in shallow water blocks in the Tampico-Misantla, Veracruz, and Southeast basin areas along the country’s Gulf Coast. Twenty companies and 16 joint ventures from 15 countries took part in the bidding. Italian energy company Eni and Russia’s Lukoil were two individual operators awarded offshore acreage.