In this issue

 

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. 

Origin Energy, the Australian utility and stakeholder in the Australia Pacific LNG plant in Queensland, has signed an agreement with France-based multinational utility and energy company Engie to make more natural gas available for their customers in the states of South Australia and Victoria. 

Our North American editor in New York

The US Delfin LNG export venture planned for 50 miles offshore Cameron Parish, Louisiana, has been awarded a deepwater port licence by the US Maritime Administration, clearing the way for the first North American FLNG project to proceed. 

The US state of Maryland, where the first East Coast LNG export plant is scheduled to come on stream by late 2017 or early 2018, is caught up in a fierce political debate on energy after the state legislature banned hydraulic fracturing for shale gas. 

News Nudges

CB&I CEO to retire

CB&I, the US energy and LNG engineering company, said Philip K. Asherman would be retiring, aged 66, from his positions as President and Chief Executive from July 1 and would be replaced by Patrick K. Mullen. “CB&I's Supervisory Board is grateful for Phil's service and congratulates him on his nearly 12 years of leadership of what has become one of the premier energy infrastructure companies in the world,” said L. Richard Flury, Non-Executive Chairman of the CB&I Supervisory Board. New CEO Mullen, aged 52, was named Chief Operating Officer in 2016 after previously serving as Executive Vice President and President of CB&I’s Engineering and Construction unit where he was responsible for worldwide operations.


Ever cleaner LNG plan

Woodside Petroleum, the major Australian LNG producer, has signed a seven-year contract with a company called Contract Resources to use its planned facility in Karratha, Western Australia, to process spent catalysts and hazardous waste by-products from LNG production and the oil and gas stream process. The Contract Resources secure storage, processing and purification plant will be the first of its kind in Australia and construction is expected to commence shortly.


UK’s gas network profit

National Grid, the UK utility and owner of the Grain LNG import terminal southeast of London, said its annual operating profit from UK Gas Transmission increased 5 percent to 511 million pounds ($662M). “UK Gas Transmission delivered a solid performance,” the company said.