LNG firms sign global partners

The eyes of the energy world continue to turn to liquefied natural gas development projects on the North Coast as both Pacific NorthWest LNG and the BG Group announced new international partnerships last week.

Pacific NorthWest LNG, proponents of the export terminal on Lelu Island, announced a deal with the China Petrochemical Corporation (SINOPEC) that gives the Chinese firm a 15 per cent interest in the upstream LNG reserves and commits the company to take 1.8 million tonnes of LNG per year, equivalent to 15 per cent of the terminal's total production. SINOPEC, through its affiliates, also signed a binding agreement to purchase an additional 3 million tonnes of LNG per year from Petronas, with the majority of that coming from the Lelu Island terminal.

While the agreement is subject to approval from the Chinese authority, this is the fourth international firm to take a stake in the project. SINOPEC joins PetroleumBrunei, the Indian Oil Corporation and Japex. The four partnerships account for 38 per cent of the project.

Meanwhile the Financial Post reports that the BG Group, the company planning to construct an LNG export facility on Ridley Island, had signed a memorandum of understanding with China's CNOOC Ltd. to jointly study creation of a plant capable of exporting between 21 million and 29 million tonnes of LNG per year. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

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