In this issue

 

Norwegian pipeline natural gas, the main competition to LNG in the UK and four other European markets as well as to Russian gas, has set a new record for exports in 2016 when 108.56 billion cubic metres were delivered.

Our Asia-Pacific editor

Air Products, the leading US and global LNG equipment maker, has made a takeover approach to Yingde Gases of China to gain a prominent role in the expanding Chinese natural gas and equipment market after completing its own restructuring.

French energy group Engie has named Didier Holleaux as the new executive head of its LNG import terminals subsidiary as well as France’s main natural gas distribution, transmission and storage companies.

Marubeni Corp. of Japan has proposed the supply of liquefied natural gas and a floating storage and regasification unit as part of a new power project in Thailand.

Our Europe editor

Höegh LNG, the Norwegian fleet owner and floating storage and regasification unit charterer, is changing its corporate structure to improve efficiency as its business moves forward with the recent placing of new FSRUs and with other projects planned.

Inpex Corp., the Japanese liquefied natural gas developer and terminal owner, is boosting its domestic natural gas portfolio amid deregulation of the utility industries in Japan, ending the monopolies of city-gas and power companies.

Gas Entec, the South Korean engineering company that provides equipment for small-scale LNG vessels and floating and onshore projects, said it delivered its gas-handing package for the first US LNG bunkering barge being construct at a shipyard in Texas.

Our Europe editor

Kosmos Energy, the US LNG project developer with assets offshore Senegal and Mauritania in West Africa and now with BP of the UK as a partner, will see New York equity funds cash in on its success by selling their shareholdings to the public after a 58 percent price surge.

UK company Ophir Energy said the Fortuna floating LNG project offshore Equatorial Guinea in West Africa remained firmly on schedule for a final investment decision in the first half of 2017.

French company will take venture in Australia to its operational stage

Our Europe editor

Technip, the French energy and liquefied natural gas engineering company, has received a boost as it puts the finishing touches to its merger with FMC Technologies of the US by being awarded a project management services contract for Royal Dutch Shell’s Prelude floating LNG venture for offshore northwest Australia.

Our Asia editor

Bangladesh is making progress to become a liquefied natural gas importer by early 2018 after key tests were successfully carried out proving the viability of the plan to provide a floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) and related infrastructure to operate at Moheshkhali Island in the Bay of Bengal.

The Gulf kingdom of Bahrain said it had received project financing of $740 million and was proceeding with the development of its first liquefied natural gas import facility, scheduled to come on line in early 2019.

Our Asia-Pacific editor

Malaysian energy company Petronas said the world’s first floating liquefied natural gas production plant has produced its first LNG from feed-gas at the Kanowit field located 180 kilometres offshore Sarawak and the first commercial cargo will be lifted in early 2017.

The Mexican liquefied natural gas import terminal at Manzanillo on the Pacific Coast has been attracting its most cargoes ever with shipments arriving recently from the US Sabine Pass plant as well as from Peru and Trinidad.

News Nudges

Cove Point LNG makes progress

The US Cove Point LNG export project in Maryland, owned by Dominion Energy, is almost 75 percent complete, according to the latest progress report filed with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The existing import terminal on Chesapeake Bay is being transformed into a liquefaction plant and is scheduled to come on stream in 2018. “At the terminal, work continued on modifications to the existing plant in the areas of the jetty platforms and tie-in scope,” said Dominion. “Construction activities conducted during the January period included preliminary commissioning activities for new compressor units and associated equipment, final building completion activities, and earthwork for corrosion protection and electrical grounding,” it added.


Awilco LNG earnings

Awilco LNG, the small Norwegian fleet operator in the spot market, said the positive trend seen in the fourth quarter of 2016 persisted into 2017 as charter rates West of Suez further improved to $52,000 per day while East of Suez rates was reported at $38,000 per day. “Despite high activity and increasing spot market rates, the short-term and mid-term time charter rates have only slightly improved,” said Awilco as it reported lower full-year freight income of $34.8 million compared with $37.4M in 2015.


Golar raising market funds

Golar LNG, the global LNG fleet operator and floating storage and regasification unit specialist, is raising up to $400 million by selling a form of bond, Convertible Senior Notes due in 2022. Golar is offering $350M of the paper in a private placement to institutional buyers and with $52.5M added, depending on demand.