This week

Emerging Asia now faces LNG
supply crisis and debut delays

Some nations in Emerging Asia such as Pakistan are facing a natural gas supply crunch as their quest for more LNG imports has been hampered by increasing spot market prices and failed tenders in the absence of adequate long-term contractual arrangements, while Sri Lanka’s LNG debut has been delayed.

Latest News
France is moving ahead with its fifth LNG import terminal with a floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) being deployed at the port of Le Havre on…
Free ReadThailand’s state energy operator PTT Public Company Limited (PTT) has secured long-term liquefied natural gas volumes by signing a firm supply deal with the largest US exporter…
The German Government has warned of a serious power situation in the country after a decision by Russian natural gas company Gazprom to cut flows further by…
Shell UK has taken the final investment decision to develop the Jackdaw natural gas field in the UK North Sea following regulatory approvals granted earlier in 2022…
Free ReadFrench LNG storage designer GTT will supply the tanks for six more LNG-powered containerships ordered from South Korea by France’s Marseille-based shipping group CMA CGM. The six…
Italy's gas grid and LNG terminal group SNAM has signed an accord with Italian utility company Edison, a subsidiary of French power operator Électricité de France, to…
Portuguese oil and gas company Galp Energia swung to a second-quarter net profit of €726 million ($741M) from a previous quarterly loss as it reported progress in…
LNG import terminal developer and leading Finnish power company Fortum and subsidiary Uniper, Germany’s biggest Russian pipeline gas importer, and the German Government have agreed a comprehensive…
Reliance Industries, the Indian conglomerate and a leading oil, natural gas and chemicals company supplying rising gas volumes to supplement LNG imports, reported a jump in revenues…
Free ReadThe Port of Rotterdam, host to the Dutch Gate LNG import terminal in the Maasvlakte area, reported “significant changes” in the first half of 2022 because of…

News in Brief

Furui Energy to increase overseas market presence

China’s Furui Energy, a developer of LNG plant projects and solutions, has enhanced its efforts to reach overseas markets by revamping its  website. 

Involved in providing clean and renewable energy to businesses in Greater China since 2008, the company is now looking to offer its services to the international market.

The company’s website can now be navigated entirely in English so multi-national companies are able to gain a clear and accurate understanding of Furui Energy’s products and offerings which range from natural gas consulting services, engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) work, and technical support services, the company said. 

As a one-stop clean energy service provider, Furui Energy claimed it had been helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions for years with a number of projects in China and overseas locations, including Malaysia, Singapore, Iraq, Uzbekistan, and Mexico.  

The website can be viewed at http://www.furuilng.com/

EU to up its support for Mozambique mission

According to a document seen by Reuters, the EU is planning to considerably increase in financial support for an African military mission in Mozambique. 

This is due to the increasing threat from Islamist terrorists to attack the country’s gas projects. 

Mozambique has been plagued by militant activity in the northern gas rich Cabo Delgado Province since 2017, adjacent to the LNG projects.

A southern African military mission and separate Rwandan troop interventions have managed to halt the militants advance since being deployed last year.

However, the EU said that the situation remains very volatile and smaller scale violent attacks have contiued in various districts. 

A paper prepared by the European External Action Service (EEAS), the EU’s de facto foreign ministry, recommended €15 mill of EU funding should be sent to the mission to 2024.

The mission is made up of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), which is a bloc of 16 African countries, of which around six send troops to Mozambique. 

An EU spokesman confirmed that the additional financial support had been proposed but said that it was still under discussion by the member governments. 

This proposal needs the backing of all the 27 members, whose military experts are due to hold a meeting on 25th August. 

Australian LNG cargo to arrive in the UK

The UK is expected to take delivery of a shipment of gas from Australia next week, as the pressure on European energy supplies grows.

According to a report from the UK’s BBC, the LNG is due to arrive on 22nd August, commodity analysts Kpler said.

Bloomberg claimed that this would be the first shipment of Australian LNG to reach the UK in six years, as the exporter does not normally ship gas for long distances.

European countries have been seeking alternatives to Russian gas following the invasion of Ukraine, which resulted in the UK stopping importing Russian gas in April.

While the UK bought only a small fraction of its gas from Russia before the conflict began, the country is connected to the European gas network, the BBC said. 

Energy analyst, David Cox, said the Australian shipment was a sign of how desperate European countries had become to secure alternative sources of gas before the winter.

"European nations are desperately trying to store up before the winter comes," he told the BBC. "This shipment isn't necessarily for the UK, because we don't have the storage to keep it anyway. But I imagine most of it will be exported to Europe where they're racing to increase their supplies."

Kpler confirmed to the BBC that the LNGC ‘Attalos’ is headed to the UK's Isle of Grain terminal near London, bringing a cargo from Australia’s North West Shelf liquefaction plant.

Hungary receives first LNG from Croatia

Hungary has received  its first LNG shipment from the Croatian FSRU import terminal at Krk.

This added a new method and route to the country’s domestic gas supply chain, which currently mainly serves the transport industry.

As a result, industrial use could also be forthcoming soon, according to ARELGAS Kft. 

After ARELGAS became the first Hungarian company to operate an LNG tanker vehicle, the possibility has opened for gas to arrive not only by pipeline but also by vehicles or ‘virtual pipelines,’ from Krk, which is the closest LNG import terminal to Hungary.

The arrival of the first Hungarian LNG vehicle from Krk and the subsequent transfer to the gas storage tank, is a milestone in terms of security of supply, diversification of the transport route, and the possibility of cost reduction.

The shortening of the transport route to supply industrial customers and thus more accurate scheduling of the delivery is an important result of this project, the company said.

Currently, Hungary has three LNG filling stations, and next year this number will double to meet the needs of the growing number of LNG-powered vehicles, local media said.

Compressor facility opens at Lafayette

Natural gas compressor equipment parts and services company, Global Compression Services has opened a 7,500 sq ft facility in Lafayette, Louisiana.

This new operation will provide sales and service throughout the Gulf of Mexico, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Lafayette joins 14 other company locations and will stock inventory for nearly all of its product range.

It has the capability to test all ignition systems, control devices and rebuild compressor valves and compressor components. 

The site also offers an in-house solution to custom tool fabrication, rebuilding valves up to 15 in and rods up to 2.5 in and can also rework pistons up to 20 in. 

Lafayette’s team is being led by branch manager, Jon Hanson, who has 30 years’ experience in the oil and gas industry and has been with Global Compression for 11 years.

Hanson explained; “Our new Lafayette facility allows us to repair compressor parts and also stock and service the parts that we once depended on other locations to do. By doing this locally, we can drastically cut time and transportation costs.”

BW LNG names two more LNGCs

BW LNG held a naming ceremony for two LNGC newbuildings at Daewoo’s Okpo Shipyard on 10th August. 

The two Singapore-flagged vessels feature a design that enables even greater focus on safe operations and flexibility, as well as the industry's lowest fuel consumption and emissions profile, BW claimed. 

Both ships have a carrying capacity of 174,000 cu m and are equipped with ME-GI propulsion units and full reliquefaction systems.   

Upon their deliveries, both vessels will go straight into long-term charters - ‘BW ENN Snow Lotus’ to Chinese energy giant ENN and ‘BW Cassia’  to bp. 

Awilco’s ‘WilForce’ fixed for six months

Awilco LNG has signed a new timecharter contract for the ‘WilForce’ with an oil major for a firm duration of about six months. 

The contract will contribute an estimated EBITDA of about $17 mill over the charter period, Awilco said. 

As previously reported, Awilco had also fixed a three, plus two year option, contract commencing in December, which will be covered by the ‘WilPride’ trading in the spot market until her delivery. 

With 20% of US exports suddenly being closed, due the Freeport lNG shutdown, the spot market for LNGCs has been very challenging, as activity and rates have softened. 

With both vessels operating in the spot market during the summer these unforeseen events led to unexpected idle periods for Awilco’s vessels, which will influence the results in the second and third quarter of this year, the company advised. 

South Koreans scoop majority of new LNGC orders

South Korean shipbuilders have won nearly eight out of 10 orders for LNGCs in the first seven months of this year.

The order book is expected to grow even further with Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering (KSOE) adding near 2 trill won ($1.5 bill) orders for LNGCs related to the massive QatarEnergy project.

According to Clarksons Research, South Korean shipyards commanded 47% of whole global shipbuilding orders in the first seven months of this year for vessels of all types.

South Korean shipbuilders won almost all LNGC orders thus far this year, during which, a total of 103 LNGCs, of 140,000 cu m and above, were ordered globally, the highest level since Clarksons began data compilation in 2000, the company said.

The yards won orders to build 78 LNGCs in total, which represents 76% of total new orders in the category placed between January and July. 

KSOE won 34 orders, while Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) won 24 and 20, respectively.

New rules for Klaipeda LNG terminal

Klaipeda LNG terminal operator, AB Klaipėdos nafta (KN) has revealed that the Lithuanian State Energy Regulatory Council (VERT) approved a new version of the LNG terminal usage rules. 

The main changes are:

Higher financial requirements are imposed on LNG terminal capacity utilisation applicants seeking to participate in the long-term LNG terminal capacity allocation procedure (raising the minimum credit rating in one step and adjusting the amount of the bank guarantee for securing the validity of the offer, which becomes equal to the amount of the requested long-term LNG de-gassing capacity).

  1. Changes are made to the allocation principles applied during the long-term LNG terminal capacity allocation procedure (transposition of statutory obligations on the LNG terminal operator to meet the natural gas needs of the groups of natural gas customers identified in the legislation).
  2. The allocation principles applicable in the annual LNG terminal capacity procedure are being amended (the application of the principle of proportionality (pro rata) is envisaged).
  3. The principles for the allocation of emergency market LNG cargo de-gassing and LNG congestion capacity are being amended, including the deadline for the submission of requests for capacity and the order of priorities, in order to ensure the proper fulfilment of the statutory obligations to the LNG terminal operator (to ensure the proper performance of the obligations imposed by the legislation on the LNG terminal operator (to ensure the service of the operation of the isolated electricity system or other services to the electricity transmission system operator, designed to ensure the security of the electricity system and reliable operation, needs for natural gas consumption).
  4. A new Annex 17 was added to the list of annexes to the entitled ‘Special conditions for the allocation of long-term LNG degassing capacity for the long-term allocation of LNG terminal capacity for the period 2023/2032’. The Annex contains the specific conditions for the allocation of long-term capacity drawn up on the basis of the rules (size of the allocated capacity, period, minimum allocation limits, etc).
  5. Amendments to the draft annual schedule and annual schedule of the LNG terminal and the arrival periods of LNG cargoes, which provide for the procedure for the use of long-term LNG degassing capacity for the delivery of LNG cargoes.
  6. Other technical, editorial changes and additions.

Accordingly, the procedures for the allocation of capacity of Klaipeda LNG terminal for 2023 will be carried out in September, KN said.

US LNGC activity increases

Twenty-two LNGCs departed from the US between 28th July and 3rd August, a rise of four week-on-week, according to shipping data provided to the US Energy Information Agency (EIA) by Bloomberg Finance.

They included eight from Sabine Pass, four each from Calcasieu Pass and Corpus Christi, three from Cameron, two from Cove Point, and one from Elba Island.

The combined LNG-carrying capacity was 81 bill cu ft.

During the period, Calcasieu Pass received approval from the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to place Blocks 5 and 6 in service, indicating that the commissioning phase for the blocks is complete and that they are now in commercial service, the EIA said in its weekly report.

In addition, Freeport LNG issued a notice last week that it now expects to resume initial operations at its Freeport LNG terminal in early October, enabling it to produce approximately 2 bill cu ft per of LNG.

During the reporting week, natural gas deliveries to LNG export terminals in South Louisiana increased by 2% (0.2 bill cu ft per day), according to data from PointLogic. 

Overall, feedgas deliveries to US terminals increased by 0.1 bill cu ft per day (1%) week-on-week.

Revell to head up SIGTTO

Ian Revell has been appointed CEO and General Manager of the Society of International Gas Tanker and Terminal Operators (SIGTTO).

He will succeed Capt Andrew Clifton and interim manager, Chris Clucas. 

Commenting on Revell’s appointment, SIGTTO President, Steffen Jacobson, said: “I am very pleased to welcome Ian Revell to the Society and look forward to working with him as he undertakes this key role. 

“We have made a considerable effort to find the right permanent candidate for this position, and have no doubt that Ian is the person to take the Society forward in meeting its objectives for the future. We have been fortunate to have Chris Clucas to provide continuity in the interim, and the handover to Ian has already begun.  Ian takes over on 1st September, 2022,” he explained.

Revell has been a Chartered Engineer for over 20 years, undertaking international executive roles in international classification and shipmanagement organisations. 

"I am honoured to take over the helm at SIGTTO during these very challenging and interesting times of change,” Revell said. 

“The key will be ensuring that the Society responds to this fast-developing landscape and continues the unwavering support for members in the journey ahead - while never losing sight of our excellent industry safety record. 

“It is essential to support our members on their respective paths transitioning towards shipping de-carbonisation in the coming years. I look forward to working closely with all SIGTTO members in this new role and maximising the value that membership brings to each organisation,” he concluded.

Qatargas commissions second Thai terminal

Qatargas has delivered a commissioning LNG cargo to Thailand’s latest LNG receiving terminal.

The newly completed LMPT2 Map Ta Phut LNG terminal is located in Rayong Province, west of Map ta Phut Port.

The LNG was loaded in Ras Laffan on 4th June, 2022, on the Q-Flex ‘Al Oraiq’. She arrived at LMPT2 Map ta Phut LNG terminal on 18th June..

Its nominal capacity is 7.5 mill tonnes of LNG per annum and it can receive vessels with a capacity of between 125,000 cu m and 264,000 cu m. 

The terminal comprises two storage tanks – each with an overall capacity of 250,000 cu m.

Qatargas also sent a commissioning cargo to the first PTT Map Ta Phut LNG terminal in May 2011. 

Qatargas said that it had contributed to commissioning 26 new LNG terminals worldwide since 2008.

Bulgaria to receive seven LNG cargoes

Bulgaria’s Ministry of Energy will initiate the signing of an agreement to purchase seven LNG cargoes.

The cargoes will improve Bulgaria's energy security, outgoing Premier Kiril Petkov has said. 

Bulgaria is expected to receive one LNG cargo per month between October, 2022 and April, 2023. 

Although the contract has been signed, it can be confirmed by 19th August, the Government said, giving the caretaker cabinet time to find a better offer, Petkov said. 

Petkov also said that the Government needs to ensure the necessary infrastructure availability Greece and Turkey to receive the cargoes, which needs to be done this month, by the caretaker Minister of Energy. 

Dynagas declares cash distribution

LNGC owner and operator, Dynagas LNG Partners’ board has declared a cash distribution of $0.546875 per unit on its Series B Fixed to Floating Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Preferred Units.

The distribution will be for the period between 22nd May to 21st August, 2022.

It is payable on 22nd August to all preferred unit holders of record as of 15th August, 2022.

Distributions on the Series B Preferred Units will be payable quarterly in arrears on the 22nd day (unless this falls on a weekend or public holiday, in which case the payment date is moved to the next business day) of February, May, August and November of each year, when, and if declared by the Board. 

Dynagas said that this was the 15th sequential cash distribution on the Series B Preferred Units since trading began on the NYSE.

The Partnership has 2,200,000 Series B Preferred Units outstanding as of 1st August.

Pacific Energy and Enbridge to partner in Woodfibre

Pacific Energy Corp and Enbridge are to jointly invest in the construction and operation of the Woodfibre LNG project.

Woodfibre LNG is a 2.1 mill tonnes per year LNG export facility including 250,000 cu m of floating storage capacity under construction near Squamish, British Columbia. 

The project is underpinned by two long-term offtake agreements with BP Gas Marketing Limited for 15 years, representing 70% of the capacity, with additional commitments in development for up to 90%. 

Last April, Woodfibre LNG announced that it had issued Notice to Proceed to McDermott International and that the project is expected to be operational in 2027.

BMO Capital Markets is acting as exclusive financial advisor to Pacific Energy Corp on this transaction.

Australia prices up

July 29 (LNGJ) - The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) said around 240,800 households across the country changed power companies last month because of soaring prices. The operator said that the total included about 87,000 households in the state of Victoria, 85,000 in New South Wales, 51,000 in Queensland and 17,000 in South Australia. Coal accounts for about 50 percent of Australia's electricity generation, followed by natural gas (16 percent), hydro-electric (5 percent) and 2 percent from oil while the balance mostly comes from renewables.

   Latest Australian natural gas prices in the short-term market were around the equivalent of US$23.35 per million British thermal units for Sydney in NSW, US$23.75 per MMBtu for Adelaide in South Australia and US$23.05 per MMBtu for Brisbane in the state of Queensland, according to AEMO data.

August LNG for UK

July 28 (LNGJ) - The UK will receive its first August LNG cargo form Qatar delivered to the South Hook import terminal in Milford Haven on August 1 by the 257,980 cubic metres capacity Q-Max carrier “Al Ghuwairiya”. The shipment is heading for the UK as the National Balancing Point market price for natural gas has surged once more to above $44 per million British thermal units, will up from $13.25 per MMBtu last year at this time.

Saipem advances

July 27 (LNGJ) - Saipem, the energy and LNG engineering firm specializing in subsea and field preparation activities, said second-quarter revenues increased by 57.3 percent to €2.36 billion ($2.24Bln). The backlog of contracts at the end of June came to €22.70Bln, including €7.75Bln in Offshore Engineering and Construction, €14.07Bln in Onshore E&C, and €885 million in Offshore Drilling.

   “These results confirm the validity of the strategic and organisational choices, which have allowed us to intercept the opportunities of the new investment cycle in our reference sectors,” said Francesco Caio, Chief Executive of Saipem. The company has also now reorganized into four business divisions: Asset Based Services, Energy Carriers, Robotics and Industrialized Solutions, and Sustainable infrastructures and is consequently adjusting its future reporting structure.

Norway gas profits

July 26 (LNGJ) - Vår Energi ASA, a player in the Norwegian oil and natural gas sector and majority-owned by Italian major Eni, reported cash flow from operations in the second quarter of $1.53 billion versus $1.31Bln in the prior-year quarter. The company operates four fields on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, located in the Barents Sea, the Norwegian Sea and the North Sea. In addition to the operated fields, Vår Energi currently holds ownership interests in 32 partner-operated fields.

   “The continued strong cash flow generation reflects another quarter of safe and efficient operations with high commodity prices and stable production and supply of gas to our customers in Europe,” said Chief Executive of Vår Energi Torger Rød. “This supports our commitment to deliver on our strategy and a $1Bln minimum dividend expectation for 2022,” added the CEO. “Second-quarter production was impacted by seasonally high maintenance and turnaround activity across our own and partner-operated licences,” he added.

US-Canada rigs up

July 25 (LNGJ) - US oil and gas services company Baker Hughes said in its weekly rig count that the number of onshore natural gas rigs increased by two in the US and by five in Canada. “The US rig count is up two from last week to 758 with oil rigs unchanged at 599, gas rigs up two to 155 and miscellaneous rigs unchanged at four,” said the report.

   “The US rig count is up 267 rigs from last year's count of 491 with oil rigs up 212, gas rigs up 51 and miscellaneous rigs up four,” added Baker Hughes. “The Canada rig count is up four from last week to 195, with oil rigs down one to 124 and gas rigs up five to 71,” stated the report.

LNG yard strike

July 22 (LNGJ) - Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering, South Korea’s third-largest shipbuilder and a leading construction yard for LNG carriers, is on the verge of ending a dispute with contracted workers that has disrupted work at the Goeje facility in South Gyeongsang province and cost the company more than $400 million as of July 21.

   DSME said the construction of eight vessels at five docks at the shipyard has been hampered with delivery dates pushed back by two to five weeks. The union representing the striking workers, the Korea Metal Workers’ Union, has now informed the company they were willing to end their strike and accept a previously offered wage increase if lawsuits seeking damages from the strikers were dropped.

Quintero LNG deal

July 21 (LNGJ) - Fluxys, the Belgian utility company and grid and Zeebrugge LNG terminal owner, has completed its acquisition with EIG Global Energy Partners of 80 percent of the shares in the Quintero LNG import terminal in Chile from Spanish grid and terminals operator Enagás and OMERS Infrastructure, the Toronto-based Canadian fund.

   “GNL Quintero, strategically located in Quintero Bay and operational since 2009, is the largest liquefied natural gas regasification terminal in Chile. It is a solid fit with Fluxys’ strategy to develop outside Europe in a country where energy transition stands high on the agenda,” said Fluxys.

Santos LNG surge

July 21 (LNG) - Santos, the Australian operator of the Gladstone LNG plant in Queensland and the Darwin facility in the Northern Territory as well as being a shareholder in Papua New Guinea LNG, reported second-quarter and first-half sales revenue of US$1.87 billion and US$3.76Bln respectively.

   Revenue from LNG sales alone in the second quarter came to US$1.07Bln. Santos said its average realised LNG price in the quarter was US$14.66 per million British thermal units versus US$7.52 per MMBtu in the prior-year quarter. “Santos’s LNG projects shipped 58 cargoes in the second quarter, of which nine were spot cargoes (Darwin LNG five and PNG LNG four) sold on a Japan-Korea Marker-linked basis,” said Santos.

Baker Hughes boost

July 20 (LNGJ) - Baker Hughes, the liquefied natural gas equipment-maker and energy services company, posted a second-quarter operating loss of $25 million compared with a profit of $194M in the prior-year period. However, the company led by Chairman and Chief Executive Lorenzo Simonelli recorded strong orders from its Turbomachinery and Process Solutions (TPS) division as the LNG order cycle continued to unfold.

   “TPS secured a major contract from Bechtel to provide seven mid-scale LNG trains to support the Stage 3 expansion project of Cheniere’s Corpus Christi Liquefaction facility,” said the company. “Also in LNG, TPS continued to support New Fortress Energy’s (NFE) ‘Fast LNG’ facilities project with a contract for two main refrigerant turbo-compressor strings in offshore. NFE will deploy Baker Hughes technology in various offshore projects across the globe,” added Baker Hughes

Worley Saudi contract

July 19 (LNGJ) - Australian LNG and energy engineering company Worley has been awarded two project management service contracts for Saudi Aramco’s unconventional natural gas programme in the North and South Arabia and Jafurah fields. There is an estimated 200 trillion standard cubic feet of gas in place in the Jafurah basin alone and it is regarded as the largest shale gas play in the Middle East covering 17,000 square kilometres.

   “Under the contracts, we will provide front-end engineering design, detailed design support, project management services and construction management services. We will carry out the work from our Al-Khobar (Saudi) and Houston offices,” said Worley.

Q-Flex LNG for UK

July 18 (LNGJ) - The 216,200 cubic metres capacity Qatari Q-Flex vessel “Al Gharrafa” is scheduled to discharge a cargo on July 24 at the South Hook LNG import terminal at Milford Haven in Wales, according to the port authorities.

   The shipment was lifted on July 7 from the Ras Laffan plant in the Arabian Gulf. The cargo is heading for the UK as the National Balancing Point market price for LNG and wholesale natural gas was last at around the equivalent of $28.20 per million British thermal units.

TotalEnergies outlook

July 15 (LNGJ) - TotalEnergies has issued a series of hints about its forthcoming second-quarter earnings statement. “Performance of the gas, LNG and power trading activities is expected to remain high, but without replicating the exceptional contribution of the first quarter of 2022,” said the Paris-based company in a message to the stock exchange.

   The company said its average realised LNG price in the second quarter was $13.96 per million British thermal units compared with $13.60 per MMBtu in the first three months of 2022 and $6.99 per MMBtu in the second quarter of 2021. “Upstream production is expected to be lower than in the first quarter, mainly due to disruptions in Nigeria and Libya for security reasons, as well as a higher volume of planned maintenance,” added TotalEnergies.

Q-Max LNG for UK

July 14 (LNGJ) - Qatar is keeping up a steady stream of LNG shipments to the UK. The 261,160 cubic metres capacity Qatari Q-Max vessel “Al Mayeda” is scheduled to discharge a cargo on July 21 at the South Hook terminal at Milford Haven in Wales, according to the port authorities. The shipment was heading for the UK as the benchmark National Balancing Point gas market prices were around $32.10 per million British thermal units while spot gas prices in the European Union were more than $20 per MMBtu higher.

Norway gas lower

July 13 (LNGJ) - Pipeline natural gas flows from Norway to the UK and the European Union were reduced on July 13 after problems at Equinor’s Sleipner gas field cut flow levels to the UK and Belgium. Data from Norwegian pipeline and terminals operator Gassco showed that Norwegian aggregated exit (nomination) flows on July 13, including UK Easington and Zeebrugge in Belgium, were at 256.6 million cubic metres. The flows to Belgium were at 23.9 mcm, about 50 percent below normal, and the Easington flows were also down at 10.4 mcm.

China city-gas plan

July 12 (LNGJ) - French industrial gases company Air Liquide plans to start its first biomethane production unit in China by the end of 2022. The plant is in Huai’an City in Jiangsu Province with a production capacity of 75 gigawatt hours per annum. “This new unit will produce biogas from agricultural and livestock waste coming from local farms and purify it into biomethane. It will then be injected into the city-gas grid to be used for household consumption,” the company explained.

   Air Liquide has developed expertise throughout the whole biomethane value chain from production, purification, liquefaction, storage and transportation. “Biomethane has a high potential in China in particular as the Chinese government supports projects promoting the valorization of waste as part of its financial plans for the development of rural regions,” stated Air Liquide.

UK Peru cargoes

July 11 (LNGJ) - The 174,000 cubic metres capacity “Gaslog Genoa” is scheduled to berth on July 13 at the UK Dragon LNG import terminal in Milford Haven carrying a cargo from Peru, according to shipping data.

   PeruPetro,  the energy company of the South American nation, said that another vessel that left the Pampa Melchorita plant on the Pacific coast of Peru on June 23, the 174,000 cubic metres capacity ship “Pearl LNG”, was also heading for the UK port of Milford Haven.

Eemshaven LNG bids

July 8 (LNGJ) - Dutch utility Gasunie said it signed the first capacity holders for the two floating storage and regasification units (FSRUs) planned for the Netherlands port of Eemshaven. Gasunie said the successful joint bidders were the Czech Republic energy company ČEZ a.s. and Shell Western LNG BV as they acquired 7 billion cubic metres of capacity.

   Gasunie said its EemsEnergy Terminal subsidiary expected the remaining 1 Bcm of capacity to be sold in the coming months. The Dutch company is chartering the two FSRUs to be deployed at Eemshaven from Belgian shipping company Exmar and New Fortress Energy of the US.

Shell forecasts

July 7 (LNG) - Shell, whose annual LNG sales amount to almost 70 million tonnes per annum, has updated its earnings forecast for its four divisions for the the second quarter, lowering expectations for LNG and gas trading earnings and with one-off hits from sanctions against Russia. Shell said that in the Integrated Gas division, including LNG, production was expected to be between 930,000 and 980,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

   “Sakhalin results derecognition is expected to have a negative impact of $300 million to $350M,” it added. “Trading and optimisation results for Integrated Gas are expected to be lower compared to the first quarter 2022, which had exceptional trading optimisation opportunities,” stated Shell. In the adjusted earnings pre-tax depreciation in the division was expected to be between $1.3 billion and $1.5Bln. In the Upstream division, pre-tax depreciation was expected to be between $2.9Bln and $3.3Bln.

LNG ship movements

July 7 (LNGJ) - The laden LNG tanker “Georgiy Ushakov”, which is carrying a Russian cargo, was in the Bay of Biscay off the West Coast of France awaiting orders, according to shipping data. The 172,000 cubic metres capacity Bahamas-flagged carrier lifted a cargo on June 29 from the Yamal LNG export plant in Arctic Russia.

   The only other LNG carrier in the area was the 134,733 cubic metres vessel “Zekreet” on its way to Zeebrugge. The ship is scheduled to berth at the Belgian port on July 11 after leaving the Ras Laffan export plant in Qatar on June 20.

OLT Offshore change

July 6 (LNGJ) - OLT Offshore LNG Toscana, the owner of the floating storage and regasification unit “FSRU Toscana” deployed offshore Livorno, has named Elio Ruggeri as Chairman and confirmed Giovanni Giorgi in the role of sole Chief Executive. The company also thanked outgoing CEO Maurizio Zangrandi, who had shared the role of Co-CEO with Giorgi.

   “I am honoured to assume the position of Chairman of OLT, an infrastructure that more than ever represents a reference point for the country in terms of security and diversification of energy supplies,” said Chairman Ruggeri. CEO Giorgi thanked Zangrandi for their positive and constructive collaboration. “I extend my sincere thanks to the company for the trust they have granted me again,” added Giorgi.

Flex LNG earnings

July 6 (LNGJ) - Flex LNG, the owner of 13 LNG carriers, has updated its market and revenues guidance to be presented at a conference organized by Norwegian investment bank Arctic Securities. “Given the recently announced Time Charter Agreements for ‘Flex Rainbow’, ‘Flex Enterprise’ and ‘Flex Amber’ which have secured in total 24 years of fixed hire employment, Flex LNG has made positive adjustments to its revenue guidance for the year,” said the company.

   Flex LNG now expects revenues for the second quarter of 2022 to be around $85 million compared with $80M previously, $90M in the third quarter and $90 to $100M in the fourth quarter. The company added that it expected higher Time Charter Equivalent Earnings (TCE) in 2023 compared with 2022. “This was due to repricing of its employment portfolio and significantly reduced spot exposure which had dragged down revenues in the first quarter of 2022 due to the pull of US cargoes to Europe in this period,” said the company.

UK LNG price surge

July 5 (LNGJ) - The fourth Qatari LNG cargo of July was heading for the UK as the natural gas price on the National Balancing Point hit its highest level for over three months, rising to the equivalent of $34.20 per million British thermal units on short-term Norwegian pipeline gas supply concerns because of a strike at offshore fields.

   The 206,960 cubic metres capacity Q-Flex carrier “Al Aamriya” is scheduled to discharge a shipment on July 12 at the UK South Hook terminal at Milford Haven after lifting the cargo on June 17 from the Ras Laffan plant in the Arabian Gulf, according to shipping data.

Q-Max LNG for UK

July 4 (LNGJ) - Qatar is keeping up a steady stream of LNG shipments to the UK. The, 261,990 cubic metres capacity Qatari Q-Flex vessel “Mozah” will discharge a cargo on July 10 at the South Hook terminal at Milford Haven in Wales, according to the port authorities. This will be the third Qatari cargo of the month of July after a previous delivery on July 2 and another scheduled for July 5.

Fire at Mongstad

July 3 (LNGJ) - Equinor, the owner of the recently re-opened Hammerfest LNG export plant after a September 2020 fire, reported a second fire on July 3 at its Mongstad refinery in Norway. “The incident was reported today at 5:46 am local time to Equinor’s emergency response organisation. The plant has been evacuated apart from critical personnel handling operations and emergency response. No personnel injuries are reported,” stated Equinor.

“Public rescue services and authorities have been notified and Equinor's emergency response organisation has been mobilised. A controlled burning of trapped volumes through pressure relief is being conducted, with continuous cooling of the surrounding equipment,” the company added. Mongstad is located in western Norway and is Equinor's largest refinery.

Sakhalin LNG change

July 1 (LNGJ) - Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree to set up a new operating company for the Sakhalin II oil and liquefied natural gas projects on Sakhalin Island in Russia’s Far East. While Shell has abandoned its stake in Sakhalin II LNG since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, two Japanese companies Mitsui and Mitsubishi Corp. remain shareholders and it was unclear what their new status would be. Japan still receives LNG shipments from the Gazprom-operated Sakhalin II plant.

Stolt-Nielsen profit

June 30 (LNGJ) - Stolt-Nielsen Ltd, the Oslo-listed shipping-to-terminals company and shareholder in the Avenir LNG joint venture for small-scale carriers and other assets, reported an increased second-quarter net profit of $58.6 million with revenue of $689.1M compared with a net profit of $52.3M with revenues of $606.2M in the first quarter.

   “The positive momentum is continuing to build in the chemical tanker market. Our tanker trading team is standing firm on contract renewals and spot fixtures to capitalise on the tightening market, and we are moving in the right direction,” said Niels G. Stolt-Nielsen, Chief Executive.

Worley-Chevron deal

June 29 (LNGJ) - Worley, the Australian engineering company, has signed a global master services agreement with leading LNG exporter Chevron Corp. covering the US major’s upstream, midstream and downstream business needs. “The agreement can be used by Chevron’s business units including those involved in onshore and offshore assets as well as during project development,” said Worley.

   “Under the agreement, we will provide engineering and project-related services. We’ve worked with Chevron for many years, and we look forward to partnering on this important agreement,” it added. “Work will be carried out by our global offices with support from our Global Integrated Delivery team in India,” added Worley.

DC power failure

June 28 (LNG) – Some of the world's most watched oil and energy data reports have not been published this week by the US Energy Information Administration due to what it said was a power problem. The lack of US data itself has seen oil rebound amid market confusion. 

   “The EIA is still in the process of system restoration and as a result, we will not publish new data June 27. This delay includes the Gasoline and Diesel Fuel Update,” said the statement. “On June 17, we discovered a voltage irregularity, which caused hardware failures on two of our main processing servers. This issue prevented us from processing and releasing several reports last week, and unfortunately, it continues to affect our ability to release data this week,” it added. 

Q-Max LNG for UK

June 28 (LNGJ) - A second July LNG cargo is scheduled to be delivered to the UK by QatarEnergy even as the differential between the UK National Balancing Point market price and the European Union benchmark, the Dutch Title Transfer Facility price, is at a record wide margin of $19 per million British thermal units.

   The Qatari Q-Max carrier, the 261,040 cubic metres capacity “Al Mafyar”, is scheduled to deliver the shipment on July 5 to the UK South Hook terminal at the Port of Milford Haven. This is three days after the discharging of an earlier shipment on July 2 by another Q-Max carrier, the “Al Dafna”.

First UK July LNG

June 27 (LNGJ) - The first UK July LNG cargo is expected to be discharged on July 2 at the South Hook terminal at the Port of Milford Haven, according to shipping data. The cargo was lifted on June 14 by the 261,990 cubic metres capacity Q-Max carrier “Al Dafna” from the Ras Laffan export plant in the Arabian Gulf.

US rig count jump

June 27 (LNGJ) - Baker Hughes said in its weekly rig count that there were 13 more US rigs this week compared with the previous week and amounted to 753 rigs. “Oil rigs are up 10 to 594, gas rigs are up three to 157 and miscellaneous rigs are up two,” said the company.

   The US Rig Count is up 283 rigs from last year's count of 470 with oil rigs up 222, gas rigs up 59 and miscellaneous rigs up by two. The US offshore rig count is flat one to 16 and up two year-on-year.

GTT China order

June 24 (LNGJ) - French LNG storage tanks technology company GTT has received an order from the shipyard in China of Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Co (DSIC) for the design of two LNG carrier membrane tanks for CMES LNG Carrier Investment Inc. GTT said this was its first project for the construction of an LNG carrier at the Dalian yard.

   “These two LNG carriers will each have a total LNG tank capacity of 175,000 cubic metres and will be fitted with the Mark III Flex membrane containment system developed by GTT,” said the Paris-based firm. The deliveries of the vessels are scheduled for the third quarter of 2025 and the first quarter of 2026.

Peru LNG for UK

June 23 (LNGJ) - The UK is awaiting another LNG shipment from the South American nation of Peru. The UK Milford Haven port authorities in Wales said the 173,400 cubic metres capacity vessel “Valencia Knutsen” was scheduled to berth on June 30 at the Dragon import terminal.

   The cargo was lifted from the Pampa Melchorita plant on the Pacific Coast of Mexico and national energy company PeruPetro said the cargo cost was linked to the UK National Balancing Point natural gas market price.

Sener LNG contract

June 22 (LNGJ) - Spanish engineering company Sener has been contracted the owners of the Gate LNG import terminal in Rotterdam, Dutch utility Gasunie and global storage company Royal Vopak, to increase the facility’s send-out capacity by an additional 1.5 billions of cubic metres per annum. This will bring terminal’s handling capability to 13.5 Bcm.

   The scope of Sener’s work is procurement and construction management of the send-out capacity expansion. This consists of the installation of a vaporizer and a high-pressure LNG pump together with all its associated facilities, such as equipment foundations, interconnection of piping and racks, power supply and process control.

US LNG for UK

June 22 (LNGJ) - The 164,000 cubic metres capacity carrier, the “Maran Gas Posidonia”, is scheduled to discharge a US LNG cargo on June 26 at the UK South Hook importer terminal at Milford Haven, according to shipping data. The cargo was lifted on June 9 from Sempra’s Cameron LNG plant in Louisiana.

   The shipment was headed for the UK as the National Balancing Point market price for natural gas was at the equivalent of $25.30 per million British thermal units, about $13.00 per MMBtu less than the European Union benchmark Dutch Title Transfer Facility (TTF) price.