This week

Poland builds alternatives to both
US LNG and Russian pipeline gas

The state-controlled Polish Oil and Gas Company, which has growing LNG import agreements, has just received formal approvals from Norway to acquire interests in licenses covering fields in the North Sea with predominantly natural gas as another security alternative to LNG and Russian gas.

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BW Gas, the gas shipping company, posted record third-quarter earnings before depreciation and disposals of $99.2 million as the LNG and LPG segments significantly increased their operating…
Technip, the French engineering and construction firm, said more than 36,000 workers were currently mobilized for its liquefied natural gas projects in Qatar and Yemen and the…
Enagas, the Spanish natural gas company and LNG terminals owner, said it plans to build a new reception terminal at El Musel, near the city of Gijón…
Gaz de France announced it formally brought into service the world’s largest LNG carrier, which has been named the “Provalys”, and was built in France at a…
UK natural gas prices plunged to between zero and 12 pence per therm as a new pipeline from Norway to the UK, Europe’s largest market, caused a…
Monday, 12 April 2004
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Wednesday, 07 July 2004
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Genesis Energy and Contact Energy of New Zealand said they have selected Port Taranaki as the preferred site for the country's first liquefied natural gas import terminal.
Technip, one of the world’s leading LNG project engineering companies, said Chairman and Chief Executive Daniel Valot would be stepping down early next year and the French…
Saturday, 12 June 2004
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GTT tank approval

Jan 15 (LNGJ) - French LNG storage tank technology company GTT has obtained approval in principle from France-based classification society Bureau Veritas for GTT’s No. 96 membrane containment system for LNG fuel tank applications for Ultra Large Container Vessels (ULCVs) . “GTT and BV reviewed the compatibility and safe integration of the No. 96 technology as an LNG fuel tank in a container vessel hull,” said GTT.

   Over the course of the study, a liquid motion assessment of the tank configuration was performed. “We are pleased to receive this new Approval in Principle which allows GTT to offer increasingly competitive solutions that meet the requirements of the LNG market as a marine fuel. This will enable all our licensees to offer membrane solutions to this market,” said Philippe Berterottière, Chairman and Chief Executive of GTT.

Spot charter rate rise

Jan 14 (LNGJ) - Shipping charter rates for LNG carriers in the spot market increased as Northern Hemisphere winter market demand surged. Rates were quoted at an average of between $168,000 per day and $172,0000 per day West of Suez. Spot rates of $158,000 to 162,000 were heard for the East of Suez charter market for vessels of between 155,000-165,000 cubic metres capacity, according to various brokers. One-year time charters also increased for the most modern vessels and ships were available for around $49,000 per day.

Japan LNG appeal

Jan 13 (LNGJ) - Japanese utility and liquefied natural gas buyer Kyushu Electric Power issued a statement saying it was urgently seeking cargoes for its gas-fired plants. “As an emergency measure, we have begun buying 2,000-4,000 tonnes of LNG left in carriers in Asia after having discharged their cargoes to secure our fuel,” said the utility in reference to the heel left in tankers to maintain cool-down.

   Kyushu Electric, based in the city of Fukuoka in the southernmost Japanese island, said it was also asking other Japanese power companies to swap deliveries if possible. Benchmark power prices in Japan have reached a record high of 232.20 Japanese yen ($2.23) per kilowatt hour. Other Japanese utilities have asked customers to try and save power usage because of gas shortages.   

Korean LNG move

Jan 12 (LNGJ) - South Korea, the largest builder of LNG carriers to transport the fuel worldwide, is increasing its own domestic fleet of LNG-powered ships and is offering grants of up to 20 percent for ship owners to convert. The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said that 39 small ships fuelled by LNG are expected to be completed at local shipyards in 2021, including 23 vessels to be used by Korean government agencies. The Ministry noted that two LNG bunkering ships were also on order.

LNG hub changes

Jan 11 (LNGJ) - Petronas, the Malaysian energy company, has seen one of its subsidiaries, Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd (PCSB), take over the operatorship of the E11 natural gas hub, located 130 kilometres offshore Bintulu in Sarawak, the Malaysian state on the island of Borneo. Petronas noted that the E11 hub, which has been producing since 1982 under the Malaysia LNG production sharing contract, had been operated by Royal Dutch Shell unit Sarawak Shell Bhd (SSB) for the past 38 years.

   The Petronas Vice President of Malaysian Assets, Bacho Pilong, said the change marked a significant landmark for PCSB as the operator of the E11 hub to ensure reliable, stable and cleaner energy supply to the market while continuing to develop Sarawak as a regional gas hub. “I am pleased to note that SSB and Petronas had implemented all the necessary activities to ensure a smooth handover of the E11 hub,” added Pilong.

Korean ship welcomed

Jan 8 (LNGJ) - Pilbara Ports Authority in Western Australia has welcomed its first LNG-powered vessel. The South Korean bulk carrier, “HL Green”, arrived on its maiden voyage to Port Hedland. “HL Green is one of two 180,000 tonne bulk carriers built in Korea and launched on 11 December 2020. The vessel is expected to make about 10 round trips a year between Korea and Australia,” said Pilbara Ports.

   The “HL Green” is distinguished from other bulk carriers by the two LNG fuel tanks at the stern. The tanks each have a storage capacity of 1,600 cubic metres. “Transitioning iron ore exports from heavy fuel oil vessels to LNG-fuelled vessels will reduce carbon, sulphur, nitrogen and other greenhouse gas emissions,” stated Pilbara Ports Chief Executive Roger Johnston. 

Gorgon LNG repair

Jan 7 (LNGJ) - Chevron Corp., operator of the Gorgon LNG export plant on Barrow Island in Western Australia, said it was carrying out repairs on Train 1 because if welding issues after repairing Train 2 in 2020 because of the same problem. “Repairs to propane heat exchangers on Gorgon LNG Train 1 are underway,” said Chevron. The issues at Train 1 were discovered during scheduled inspections of the facility during maintenance.

Russian LNG for UK

Jan 6 (LNGJ) - The 172,000 cubic metres capacity carrier, the “Rudolf Samoylovich”, was scheduled to berth on January 6 at the UK Dragon import terminal at the port of Milford Haven in Wales with a cargo from the Yamal plant in northern Siberia, according to the port authorities.

   The UK National Balancing Point benchmark gas price has been firm over the past week and was last at $7.35 per million British thermal units while the continental European Dutch Title Transfer facility (TTF) price was lower at the equivalent of $6.95 per MMBtu.

Korean LNG carrier

Jan 6 (LNGJ) - South Korean shipbuilder Samsung Heavy Industries has signed a deal valued at 199 billion South Korean won ($185 million), to build a liquefied natural gas carrier for the South Korean shipping company Pan Ocean Co. The Korean shipping line has delivered cargoes of LNG since 2008 for the nation’s largest importer, Korea Gas Corp. The new vessel is scheduled to be delivered in April 2023.

Capital ship delivery

Jan 5 (LNGJ) - Capital Gas Ship Management Corp., the Greek company based in the port of Piraeus, has taken delivery of the LNG carrier newbuild, the “Aristidis I”, from the Hyundai Heavy Industries shipyard in South Korea. The “Arisidis I” has been chartered to BP Shipping of the UK for a period up to 12 years.

   “With cargo capacity of 174,000 cubic metres, the vessel is highly efficient, propelled with XDF engines and equipped with the latest available technologies, including an air lubrication system and increased filling limits (up to 93.5 percent),” said Capital Gas. “It is the second of seven sister ships to be delivered between 2020-2023,” the company added.

Renergen gas moves

Jan 4 (LNGJ) - Renergen, the emerging South African helium developer with plans to produce LNG at a small-scale liquefaction plant in Free State province from onshore resources, issued a quarterly update on sales and marketing achievements. It signed an LNG supply agreement with local firm Logico Logistics and added the N1 route from Johannesburg to Cape Town for several LNG filling stations in a venture with French major Total.

   “While drilling continues, albeit at a pace slower than hoped, the company continues to make progress and preparations have begun for three new wells,” said Renergen. “The company remains committed to delivering meaningful drilling results over the course of the first quarter of calendar year 2021, and updated reserves and resources following on from this data,” it stated. 

Azeri gas for EU

Jan 1 (LNGJ) - Azerbaijan, the former republic of the Soviet Union, has started commercial natural gas supplies to southern Europe via the Trans- Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) in competition to LNG and Russian pipeline gas from Gazprom. The TAP pipeline is 3,500 kilometres in length and is part of the $40-billion Southern Gas Corridor bringing natural gas to Europe from the Shah Deniz II field in the Caspian Sea, operated by UK oil and gas major BP.

   Azerbaijan plans to supply the markets of the European Union with 10 billion cubic metres per annum of pipeline gas, including 8 Bcm to Italy and a combined 2 Bcm to Greece and Bulgaria. It has already supplied gas to Turkey. The TAP stakeholders include BP and the Azeri energy company Socar, as well as the gas grid operators of Italy, Spain and Belgium.

Spain gas demand up

Dec 31 (LNGJ) - Natural gas consumption in Spain, the largest European importer of US LNG cargoes, grew by 3.4 percent in December compared with the same month in 2019. “Specifically, conventional demand, for household, commercial and industrial consumption, grew compared to December of the previous year, reaching 29.7 terawatt hours,” said Enagás, the gas grid network and LNG import terminal operator. “This increase was driven by a recovery in industrial demand with regard to the values reached during the lockdown months in addition to the cold temperatures at the end of the month,” the company added.

   Demand for natural gas in Spain for all of 2020 was heading for 360.0 TWh, which is 3.1 percent more than the figure recorded in 2018. “Compared to 2019, when demand grew exceptionally (up 14 percent) due to high deliveries of natural gas for electricity generation, total demand is around 90.4 percent,” added Enagás.

Charter rates firm

Dec 31 (LNGJ) - Shipping charter rates for LNG carriers in the spot market were firm as Northern Hemisphere winter market demand increased. Rates were quoted at an average of between $158,000 per day and $162,0000 per day West of Suez. Spot rates of $148,000 to 152,000 were heard for the East of Suez charter market for vessels of between 155,000-165,000 cubic metres capacity, according to various brokers. One-year time charters were also little changed for the most modern vessels and were available for around $47,000 per day.

UK gas prices jump

Dec 30 (LNGJ) - UK natural gas prices surged to their highest level of this winter season on colder weather, while continental European prices slipped back. The UK National Balancing Point benchmark jumped to the equivalent of $7.50 per million British thermal units from $6.80 per MMBtu yesterday. The Dutch Title Transfer facility (TTF) price was at the equivalent of $6.75 per MMBtu, down from the previous day’s $6.90 per MMBtu.

   UK North Sea instantaneous supply flows on December 30 amounted to 329.98 million cubic metres, while demand flows came to 351.3 mcm, according to National Grid data. The Norwegian aggregated (including UK) exit flows on December 30 published by Norway’s Gassco were 341.41 mcm versus 337.6 mcm on the previous day. 

Mixed gas fortunes

Dec 30 (LNGJ) - Australia company Beach Energy, which will become an LNG exporter from its gas resources in the onshore Perth Basin in Western Australia, has had less luck at the Ironbark 1 offshore exploration well in exploration permit WA-359-P.

   The Western Australia well was drilled to a total depth of 5,618 metres measured depth, intersecting the primary target of the Mungaroo formation at 5,275 metres. “No significant hydrocarbon shows were encountered in the target sandstones,” concluded the report. “The exploration well will be plugged and abandoned, in-line with pre-drill planning,” it added. Other shareholders include operator BP of the UK, Cue Energy of Australia and New Zealand Oil and Gas. 

Korean LNG newbuilds

Dec 29 (LNGJ) - The three main South Korean shipyards specializing in LNG newbuilds have confirmed receiving orders in 2020 for 46 LNG carriers, or 73 percent of the 63 orders placed worldwide. Korea Shipbuilding and Offshore Engineering, Samsung Heavy Industries and Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering said they had achieved 91 percent, 65 percent and 75 percent respectively of their order targets during the year. KSOE is the world's leading shipbuilding group comprising Hyundai Heavy Industries, Hyundai Mipo Dockyard and Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries.

First 2021 UK LNG

Dec 28 (LNGJ) - The 165,000 cubic metres capacity carrier Marib Spirit will deliver the first LNG cargo of 2021 to the UK when it berths on January 1 at the South Hook import terminal at the port of Milford Haven in Wales. The vessel will discharge a shipment from the US Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana.

   The shipment was heading for the UK as winter season prices remained firm. The National Balancing Point benchmark was at the equivalent of $6.80 per million British thermal units while the continental European Dutch Title Transfer facility (TTF) price was lower at the equivalent of $6.30 per MMBtu.

LNG spot charters

Dec 24 (LNGJ) - Shipping charter rates for LNG carriers in the spot market have edged higher as Northern Hemisphere winter market demand increased. Rates were quoted at an average of between $158,000 per day and $162,0000 per day West of Suez. Spot rates of $148,000 to 152,000 were heard for the East of Suez charter market for vessels of between 155,000-165,000 cubic metres capacity, according to various brokers. One-year time charters were also little changed for the most modern vessels and were available for around $47,000 per day.

Last UK LNG of 2020

Dec 23 (LNGJ) - The 140,500 cubic metres capacity carrier “Hispania Spirit” is scheduled to deliver what will be the last cargo discharged in the UK in 2020 with its arrival on December 30 at the Dragon LNG import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales from the US Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana. The shipment was heading for the UK as winter season prices remained firm. The National Balancing Point benchmark rose to the equivalent of $6.95 per million British thermal units while the continental European Dutch Title Transfer facility (TTF) price was lower at the equivalent of $6.30 per MMBtu.

GTT orders grow

Dec 22 (LNGJ) - Gaztransport and Technigaz (GTT) said it received orders from the South Korean shipyards of Hyundai Heavy Industries and Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries (HSHI) for the tank design of four LNG carriers on behalf of European and Asian shipowner. Each vessel will offer a capacity of 174,000 cubic metres.

   GTT will design the Mark III Flex membrane containment system for the carriers, with deliveries of the vessels scheduled for the third and fourth quarters of 2024. GTT said this brought to 41 the total number of LNG carrier tank orders the Paris-based company has received this year.

Coal use resists LNG

Dec 21 (LNGJ) - Switching from coal-fired power to LNG and gas-fired electricity generation will be slower in 2021 as coal demand is likely to rebound in the coming year, according to the latest coal industry report from the Paris-based International Energy Agency.

   “A global economic recovery in 2021 is expected to drive a short-lived rebound in coal demand following the major drop this year triggered by the Covid-19 crisis,” said the IEA. “However, there is little sign that the world’s coal consumption is set to decline substantially in the coming years unless new government policies are introduced, with rising demand in some Asian economies offsetting declines elsewhere,” stated the IEA.

US LNG imports

Dec 18 (LNGJ) - The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission said Trans-Foreland Pipeline Co. a subsidiary of Marathon Petroleum Corp, has permission to convert the former small-scale Kenai LNG export plant into an import terminal. The FERC permit gives Trans-Foreland two years to put the proposed facility into service. Trans-Foreland plans to import around four LNG shipments per annum for use in the adjacent Kenai Refinery.

   The previous Kenai export plant, started by Marathon and predecessor companies of ConocoPhillips, entered service in 1969 and shipped cargoes to Japanese utilities for 47 years. The FERC filing on Trans-Foreland had a second filing attached in which one of the Commissioners, Richard Glick, issued a dissenting vote. “The Commission is again refusing to consider the consequences its actions have for climate change,” he stated.

Corpus Christi LNG

Dec 17 (LNG) - Two US LNG cargoes are heading for the UK in the next week with deliveries from Gulf Coast plants in Louisiana and Texas. The 170,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “Hoegh Gannet” is scheduled to arrive on December 22 at the South Hook import terminal in Milford Haven with a shipment from the Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana. This vessel acts as both a conventional carrier and a floating storage and regasification unit. It will be followed on December 24 by the 173,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Torben Spirit” berthing to discharge a cargo at South Hook from the Corpus Christi export plant in Texas.

Greek Singapore move

Dec 16 (LNGJ) - Greece-based company Probunkers has responded to the Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) Request for Proposal for new licensees to  supply liquefied natural gas in the Asian city-state port. “Our submission request for an LNG bunkering licence for the Port of Singapore supports our quest to become the first independent global LNG bunker supplier,” said Probunkers Chief Executive Alexander Prokopakis.

   “The LNG-fuelled fleet is growing and we see an increasing interest from charterers and shipowners for LNG as a marine fuel,” explained Prokopakis. “It is widely acceptable that in order to see significant development in LNG as a marine fuel changes need to be made. It is time for more commercial and transparent practices along the lines of traditional oil bunkering. Having long-term contracts and commitments was the way of doing business in the past. The industry needs to move forward,” stated the CEO.

JGC Saudi contract

Dec 16 (LNGJ) - JGC Holdings Corp., the Japanese LNG and energy engineering company, said its subsidiary in Saudi Arabia, JGC Gulf International, signed a six-year comprehensive agreement with Saudi Aramco for brownfield oil and gas projects. “The agreement covers various engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) works for upgrade or modification of existing oil and gas plants owned and operated by Aramco,” said JGC, without disclosing the contract value.

   “Plant modification work is extremely challenging, as it requires thorough knowledge of plant equipment configuration and location, incorporation of the latest technology into the design, as well as the planning and execution of a prompt and safe construction plan tailored to the plant's operating conditions,” explained the Yokohama-based company.

Russian LNG for UK

Dec 15 (LNGJ) - The 172,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Georgiy Brusilov” is scheduled to deliver a cargo on December 22 to the UK Dragon LNG import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales from the Yamal export plant in northern Siberia. The shipment was heading for the UK as winter season prices remained firm, with the National Balancing Point benchmark quoted at the equivalent of $6.40 per million British thermal units. The continental European Dutch Title Transfer facility (TTF) price was lower at the equivalent of $5.90 per MMBtu.

Yamal pump debuts

Dec 14 (LNGJ) - Novatek, the Russian natural gas company and LNG plant operator and developer, said the first large-scale cryogenic pump made in Russia was successfully tested at the Yamal LNG plant in northern Siberia. The cryogenic pump was designed and manufactured by Afrikantov OKB Mechanical Engineering, part of Russia’s JSC Atomenergomash group.

   The cryogenic pump tests were conducted at Yamal's current LNG tank storage and they confirmed the pump’s performance consistent with its design parameters. “One of Novatek’s key priorities is to develop and foster LNG technologies and capabilities in Russia,” noted Leonid Mikhelson, Novatek’s Chairman. “Our joint work under the agreement we signed with Atomenergomash in 2017 has already yielded significant results,” he added.

Big Rosneft gas find

Dec 11 (LNGJ) - Russian energy company Rosneft has made a huge discovery in the Kara Sea area with estimated resources of 800 billion cubic metres of natural gas and the field has been named after the Soviet Union’s WWII hero, Marshal Georgy Zhukov, whose forces captured Berlin.

   “The drill hole is 1,621 metres deep and is located in the area where Rosneft and partners in 2014 found 130 million tons of oil,” said the company. “The results of drilling carried out by Rosneft in the Kara Sea have shown the high oil and gas content of these structures, which confirms the discovery of a new Kara offshore oil province,” said Rosneft. “In terms of resources, it may surpass such oil and gas provinces as the Gulf of Mexico, offshore Brazil or the largest resource areas in the Middle East,” added Rosneft.

Charter rates rise

Dec 10 (LNGJ) - Shipping charter rates for LNG carriers in the spot market edged higher as Northern Hemisphere winter market demand increased. Rates were quoted at an average of between $112,000 per day and $118,000 per day West of Suez. The same levels of spot rates were also heard for the East of Suez charter market for vessels of between 155,000-165,000 cubic metres capacity, according to various brokers. One-year time charters were also little changed for the most modern vessels and were available for around $47,000 per day.

Occidental UAE win

Dec 10 (LNGJ) - Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (Adnoc) signed an exploration concession agreement for onshore Block 5 with Occidental Petroleum of the US, the company which sold the Mozambique LNG project to French major Total after acquiring it with its Anadarko Petroleum acquisition in 2019.

   The award has been approved by Abu Dhabi’s Supreme Petroleum Council (SPC) and follows the SPC’s endorsement in November of Adnoc awarding exploration blocks in Abu Dhabi’s second competitive block bid round. Occidental will hold a 100 percent stake in the exploration phase, investing up to 514 million United Arab Emirates dirhams ($140 million), including a participation fee, to explore for and appraise oil and gas opportunities in the block that covers an onshore area of 4,212 square kilometres southeast of Abu Dhabi city.

Trinidad output fall

Dec 9 (LNGJ) - Trinidad and Tobago, the LNG exporter whose principal market was formerly the United States before the shale-gas revolution and which now supplies Europe and South America, expects to see shipments drop by around 20 percent in 2021 because of feed-gas declines at the Atlantic LNG liquefaction plant at Point Fortin.

   Atlantic LNG exported 12.50 million tonnes last year compared with 15.3 MTPA of nameplate capacity and this total is lower in 2020 and will also fall in the coming year because of a supply deficit for Train 1. BP, which supplies the feed-gas for Train 1 at the four-Train facility, said its infill drilling had failed to deliver at forecast levels to ensure supply. Executive said that it was expected that Train 1 would be put in operations-ready mode for all of 2021 into 2022 as upstream results are investigated.

GTT Korean order

Dec 8 (LNGJ) - Gaztransport and Technigaz (GTT) said it received an order from the South Korean shipyard Hyundai Heavy Industries for the tank design of two LNG carriers on behalf of a European shipowner. “Each vessel will offer a capacity of 174,000 cubic metres. GTT will design the tanks of the vessels, which will be fitted with the Mark III Flex membrane containment system,” said GTT. “Deliveries of the vessels are scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2022 and the third quarter of 2023 respectively,” said the Paris-based company.

UK cargo on Dec 10

Dec 7 (LNGJ) - The 155,000 cubic metres capacity “GasLog Santiago” is scheduled to deliver a cargo on December 10 to the UK Dragon LNG terminal at Milford Haven in Wales from the US Sabine Pass plant of Cheniere Energy in Louisiana, according to the port authorities. The cargo was heading for the UK as prices remain firm, with the National Balancing Point benchmark quoted at the equivalent of $5.70 per million British thermal units. The continental European Dutch Title Transfer facility (TTF) price was lower at the equivalent of $5.20 per MMBtu.

Burckhardt LNG orders

Dec 4 (LNGJ) - Burckhardt Compression, the Swiss-based liquefied natural gas equipment provider, won an order consisting of eight low-pressure systems for boil-off gas (BOG) management.

   “The compressor solutions are destined for two 14,000 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units) and two 690 FEU (forty-foot equivalent units) container vessels ordered by C-LNG Solutions, a Singapore-based leader in LNG fuel gas solutions and LNG cargo handling,” said Burckhardt. “All ships will be equipped with WinGD X-DF propulsion systems and will be built at a Chinese shipyard with the option for 16 more vessels,” said the company, whose headquarters are in Winterthur.

Golar share sale

Dec 3 (LNGJ) - Golar LNG Ltd, the fleet operator and project developer, plans to offer 11 million common shares to the public with a par value $1.00 per share through an underwritten public offering. The company intends to use the net proceeds from the sale to partially repay loans and for funding general corporate activities.

   Golar also intends to grant the underwriters of the offering a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 1.65M common shares. Joint book-running managers of the share sale are the US Citigroup, and Nordic banks Clarksons Platou Securities and DNB Markets. Norway-based Arctic Securities is acting as a manager for the offering.

Tristar ship’s UK cargo

Dec 2 (LNGJ) - The 155,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “Tristar Ruby”, the first LNG carrier among the fleet of 30 tankers owned by the Dubai-based Tristar Group, is scheduled to deliver a US cargo on December 8 to the UK South Hook terminal at Milford Haven in Wales, according to the port authorities. The shipment was lifted on November 22 from Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass export plant in Louisiana.

   The “Tristar Ruby” was constructed in 2008 at the Hyundai Heavy Industries shipyard in South Korea and was previously named the “British Ruby” and operated by BP Shipping. The Tristar-acquired ship was chartered back to BP earlier in 2020 in a four-year deal.

China ISO deliveries

Dec 1 (LNGJ) - Russian Yamal LNG plant operator, Novatek, said its Asian trading unit and Saibu Gas Co. of Japan completed their first joint trial delivery of liquefied natural gas in ISO containers to China's Tiger Gas for subsequent sales to Chinese buyers. The LNG was delivered by sea in Tiger Gas-owned ISO containers from the Japanese Hibiki container terminal to the Chinese port of Shanghai under a spot contract.

   “Together with our partners, we have successfully completed our first trial delivery of LNG in ISO containers to China,” declared Lev Feodosyev, Novatek’s First Deputy Chairman. “It is forecast that ISO containers of LNG will exponentially increase over the upcoming decades, allowing us to diversify our customer base by including small-scale LNG consumers and entering the downstream markets in China and Japan,” added Feodosyev.

Portugal rail LNG

Dec 1 (LNGJ) - Medway-Iberia, the Portugal-based multimodal logistics company offering truck and train services, said it invested in 14 specific tank containers for the transport of liquefied natural gas by rail for the Portuguese national oil and gas company Galp Energia. The purchase follows an agreement between the two companies signed in November.

   The contract includes the annual transport of 800 LNG containers from the Portuguese Sines import terminal, to various gasified storage units located mostly in north region of the Iberian river Douro. “This agreement proves Galp’s confidence in our integrated freight transport services and is a motivation for the country to continue investing in the future of the railroad, as it is the most sustainable choice when it comes to means of transport,” stated Carlos Vasconcelos, Administrator of Medway-Iberia.

Gentle leaves Tellurian

Nov 30 (LNGJ) - Tellurian Inc., the developer of the Driftwood LNG project, announced that there had been a “mutually agreed” departure of President and Chief Executive Meg Gentle who will potentially be paid up to $21 milllion. “In connection with her departure, the company and Ms Gentle agreed, among other things, that Ms Gentle would continue to receive her current base salary through December 31, 2021,” said Tellurian.

   Gentle’s replacement was named as former Sempra LNG and Midstream CEO Octávio Simões. Simões, aged 61, joined Tellurian in April 2019 as Senior Advisor to the CEO. Tellurian added that Gentle had “agreed to certain customary confidentiality, non-disparagement, non-solicitation and non-compete covenants” on her departure, while retaining compensation benefits such as a future lump sum cash payment of $721,000 and 3.25 million shares of restricted Tellurian stock that will vest upon a final investment decision relating to the Driftwood Project.

US cargo for UK

Nov 30 (LNGJ) - The UK is set to receive more US LNG shipments with the latest cargo scheduled for delivery on December 6 to the Dragon import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales on board the 155,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Gaslog Skagen”.

   The cargo from the Cheniere Energy Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana heads for the UK as prices remained firm, with the UK National Balancing Point benchmark quoted at the equivalent of $5.65 per million British thermal units. The Dragon terminal is owned by Royal Dutch Shell and Ancala Partners, a UK infrastructure investment fund. Shell is the main capacity holder along with Malaysian energy company Petronas.

Gazprom expansion

Nov 27 (LNGJ) - Russian natural gas company Gazprom, the main competitor to LNG imports in Western Europe, said it was expanding its domestic market and has built 9,830 kilometres of gas pipelines under the latest four-year infrastructure programme, enabling the supply of gas to 1,358 new localities.

   “Accordingly, the gas penetration rate in Russia will grow from 66.2 percent (as of the beginning of 2016) to 71.4 percent by January 1, 2021. The rates of gas grid growth in rural areas will be 2.6 times higher than those in cities and towns,” explained Gazprom. The next building programme through 2025 will entail the construction of 24,400 kilometres of gas pipelines to supply 3,632 more localities.

Texas LNG for UK

Nov 26 (LNGJ) - The first December LNG cargo for the UK will be delivered from Texas to the Dragon LNG import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales, according to the Port Authority. The shipment will arrive on December 3 from the Cheniere Energy plant at Corpus Christi in Texas onboard the carrier “Marib Spirit”, which has capacity of 165,000 cubic metres.

Asian firms promoted

Nov 25 (LNGJ) - The France-based International Group of Liquefied Natural Gas Importers (GIIGNL), which has 86 members in 27 countries, has promoted three companies to its Executive Committee at its annual meeting. They are China National Offshore Oil Corp (CNOOC) Gas, Power and Trading, CPC Corp. of Taiwan and Indian importer Petronet LNG. “The increase with three new members from Asia reflects the growing importance of LNG imports in the region,” said the group.

Narrabri Gas go-ahead

Nov 24 (LNGJ) - Australian LNG plant operator Santos said it welcomed the approval by the Federal Environment Ministry of the Narrabri Gas Project in New South Wales and will now embark on a 12-18 month appraisal program ahead of a final investment decision. Adelaide-based Santos operates the Gladstone LNG plant in Queensland and has a stake in Darwin LNG and the export facility in Papua New Guinea. The Narrabri project is for coal seam gas development with around 850 wells planned.

   Santos Chief Executive Kevin Gallagher said the conditions on the Narrabri Gas Project approval were consistent with those already set by the New South Wales Independent Planning Commission and generally in line with those for the company's Gladstone LNG operations, where Santos operates safely and efficiently, while protecting water resources and the environment. “Santos is excited about the prospect of developing the Narrabri Gas, a 100 percent domestic gas project that will deliver the lowest-cost source of gas for NSW customers,” added the CEO.

Egyptian LNG for UK

Nov 23 (LNGJ) - The 159,800 cubic metres capacity carrier “Maran Gas Efessos” is scheduled to deliver a cargo of Egyptian LNG on November 29 to the UK Dragon import terminal at the Port of Milford Haven in Wales, according to the Port Authority. The shipment comes from the Idku export plant, operated by Royal Dutch Shell, and located east of the port of Alexandria.

Costa Azul regas fight

Nov 20 (LNG) - Infraestructura Energética Nova (IEnova), the Mexican subsidiary of US LNG exporter and utility Sempra Energy, said it received confirmation that its customer Gazprom Marketing and Trading has joined as a plaintiff in the arbitration proceedings initiated by Royal Dutch Shell’s Mexican subsidiary, Shell México Gas Natural, against the Costa Azul LNG terminal relating to previous agreements made before plans were moved forward to turn the import terminal into an export plant.

   IEnova received a request for arbitration from Shell México derived from a storage services contract between Costa Azul and Shell, whereby it claimed that a 2019 update to the terms and conditions related to the storage services provided at the facility resulted in a cause of “force majeure” and a breach of contract. “Costa Azul Regas considers that Shell and Gazprom's claims are unfounded and inadmissible and will enforce their rights in the corresponding arbitration process, seeking to dismiss the claims of the counterparties,” it said.

Charter rates flat

Nov 19 (LNGJ) - Shipping charter rates for LNG carriers in the spot market were unchanged in the past week as the Northern Hemisphere winter market demand continued to be firm. Rates were quoted at an average of between $109,000 per day and $115,000 per day West of Suez. The same levels of spot rates were also heard for the East of Suez charter market for vessels of between 155,000-165,000 cubic metres capacity, according to various brokers. One-year time charters were also little changed for the most modern vessels and were available for around $47,000 per day.

Brownsville contract

Nov 18 (LNGJ) - NextDecade Corp., developer of the Rio Grande LNG export project in Texas, said that after a competitive bid and contracting process it had selected Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Corp. to perform improvements near its planned facility on the Brownsville Ship Channel.

   “These improvements, which include deepening the Channel, will enhance commercial navigation into and out of the Port of Brownsville, ensuring the safe and reliable access of LNG carriers to NextDecade’s Rio Grande LNG facility and optimizing the ability of shallower draft traffic to pass LNG carriers in either direction in accordance with US Coast Guard guidelines,” the company explained. 

Aramco bond offering

Nov 17 (LNGJ) - The Saudi Arabian Oil Company, the world’s biggest oil industry operator with future LNG and natural gas plans, is planning to offer around $6 billion of bonds following a $12Bln bond sale in April 2019 that sparked buying orders of over $100Bln, mostly from US fund managers and making it the most over-subscribed bond sale in history. Dhahran-based Saudi Aramco is said to be offering five tranches maturing in three years, five years, 10 years, 30 years and 50 years.