Saturday, June 24, 2017

Novatek Aims to Topple Qatar from LNG Top Spot

File photo: Novatek

Russian gas producer Novatek aims to topple Qatar as the world's biggest exporter of liquefied natural gas as it gets closer to completing its first LNG project, a top executive said, batting away concerns about U.S. sanctions on the sector. The country's largest non-state gas producer is expected to start exporting LNG from the first phase of the Yamal project, situated far above the Arctic circle, towards the end of this year and may bring forward its final stage by six months, CFO Mark Gyetvay said. But it is the inception of Novatek's second…

KOGAS to Receive first Cheniere LNG Cargo

File Image: A typical LNG Carrier at Sea (CREDIT: MISC)

KOGAS to receive first LNG cargo from Cheniere in July; this marks start of 20-year supply contract. Korea Gas Corp (KOGAS) will early next month receive its first liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo under a long-term supply deal with U.S. exporter Cheniere Energy, two sources at the South Korean company said on Friday. The 74,000-tonne LNG cargo was loaded from Cheniere's Sabine Pass export terminal in Louisiana and is scheduled to arrive at the port of Tongyeong, South Korea on July 2, one of the sources said. Both sources declined to be identified.

India's LNG Market to Reach USD 30.7bln by 2025

Image: Petronet LNG Limited

India Natural Gas and LNG market is expected to grow from US$ 19.7 billion in 2015 to US$ 30.7 billion by 2025 at a CAGR of 5.06% between 2016 and 2025. According to a report by Research and Markets, natural gas including Regasified Liquefied Natural Gas (R-LNG) in India has been widely recognized as the fuel with multiple promising aspects. The present situation of the gas sector in India is going through multiple challenging phase. Due to its high macroeconomic growth visions and increasing population, the country is facing major challenge in terms of growing energy demand and greenhouse gas emission.

Golar, Delfin to Jointly Develop US FLNG Project

A joint development agreement between Delfin Midstream and Golar LNG Limited will see the two jointly develop the Delfin LNG project off the coast of Cameron Parish, La. The joint development agreement will facilitate the financing, marketing, construction, development and operation of Delfin LNG, the first and only permitted floating LNG (FLNG) export project in the U.S. Delfin LNG is a brownfield Deepwater Port requiring minimal additional infrastructure investment to support up to four FLNG vessels producing up to 13 million metric tons of LNG per annum.

Poland Halts Yamal Pipeline Gas Deliveries

Poland's state gas pipeline operator Gaz-System said on Wednesday the country has stopped taking in gas deliveries via the Yamal pipeline due to poor quality of gas and currently plans to maintain limits on gas transit until June 23. "Due to the poor quality of the natural gas, Gaz-System cannot receive gas deliveries for the domestic transit system at the joint connection point (PWP) on the Yamal pipeline," Gaz-System said in a statement. "Limits on the transit capacity ... are planned to be maintained until June 23, 0600 (local Polish time)".

Private Producer Aims to Ship Baltic's First Russian LNG Before Gazprom

LNG Gorskaya, a privately-owned Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG) producer, has launched a 340 million euro ($379 million) project to become the first LNG exporter from Russia's European coast, its CEO told Reuters. Russia expects to send LNG to Europe by the end of 2017 from its distant Arctic peninsula of Yamal but a plant on its Baltic coast could establish the country as a more immediate supplier of LNG in a region already dependent on piped Russian gas. The company will build a floating LNG plant off the port of Gorskaya, not far from Saint Petersburg, which will be fed by a 12 km pipeline from Gazprom.

Snam in Talks to Buy LNG Terminal Stake from Edison

Photo: Adriatic LNG

Italian gas group Snam is in exclusive talks with EDF's Italian unit Edison to buy a stake in a liquefied natural gas terminal in northern Italy as part of plans to develop its LNG business, two sources said. Snam, controlled by state lender Cassa Depositi e Prestiti, is looking to buy Edison's 7.3 percent stake in Terminale LNG Adriatico and the gas pipeline that connects it to Italy's gas transmission backbone, the sources said. Adriatic LNG, which has a capacity of 8 billion cubic metres per year, is 70.7 percent owned by ExxonMobil and 22 percent by Qatar Petroleum. Exxon and Qatar have a pre-emption right on Edison's stake.

US LNG Going Global

© Anatoly Kolodey / Adobe Stock photo

The U.S. liquified natural gas (LNG) market is ripe with opportunity, according to American Action Forum (AAF). "When coupled with the tension surrounding Qatar (the largest exporter of natural gas in the world), this makes U.S. LNG production a very attractive option," said Kimberly VanWyhe is the Director of Energy Policy at the AAF. In 2016, LNG exports from the U.S. totaled 184,141 million cubic feet with a value of roughly $564 million. Currently the U.S. is exporting LNG to 23 out of 35 countries that can accept LNG transport vessels, a sharp change from this time last year. Last week, Taiwan received their first  shipment of U.S.

UK Mulls Revisiting Oldest North Sea Blocks

File Image: A North Sea Offshore Oil Platform (CREDIT:Craig International)

Britain wants oil and gas drillers to recover pockets of gas that are more difficult to reach in a part of the North Sea where drilling for fossil fuels started over 50 years ago. Britain's oil regulator, the Oil and Gas Authority (OGA), said on Thursday that some 3.8 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of tight gas remain in the southern North Sea, one of the world's oldest offshore gas extraction areas that has produced more than 40 tcf. Drilling activity in Britain's North Sea has been at a record low for two years as weak oil prices make projects less attractive.

Qatar Tells US It Will Maintain Stable LNG Exports

Qatar's finance minister told U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin during a trip to Washington last week that Qatar was committed to maintaining stability around its exports of liquefied natural gas to the global energy market, according to a statement by Qatar's government communication office. "They discussed Qatar’s efforts to counter terror financing ... and Qatar’s commitment to maintaining stability around its exports to the global energy market," the statement said. Saudi-led sanctions imposed two weeks ago on Qatar…

Offshore Gas Safety atop the Agenda for Martek Marine

Gas Sampling System (Photo: Martek Marine)

Maritime industry technology specialists Martek Marine say it is setting the bar high when it comes to offshore gas safety. The company has developed a first-of-its-kind gas sampling system for a new moored floating production unit, which forms part of the Jangkrik Complex gas fields development in Indonesia. The system has been developed to dramatically improve offshore crew safety through the use of advanced gas sampling technology. The worst offshore disaster in history, the Piper disaster on July 6, 1988, involved a series of gas explosions which destroyed the Piper Alpha oil platform in the North Sea, killing 167 men.

Qatargas to Supply LNG to Shell

Photo: Qatargas Operating Company Limited

Qatargas and Shell have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that will lead to the two companies jointly researching liquefied natural gas (LNG) logistics. Through this joint logistics research collaboration, Qatargas and Shell aim to develop new ways to optimize supply chains to deliver to LNG global markets. The research will be conducted at the Qatar Shell Research & Technology Centre at the Qatar Science & Technology Park. The MOU was signed by Faisal Al Suwaidi, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Qatargas Operating Company, and Andy Brown, Managing Director of Pearl GTL and Qatar Shell Country Chairman.

Greece, Israel, Cyprus to Speed up Mediterranean Pipeline Efforts

Greece, Israel and Cyprus said on Thursday they would speed up plans for the development of a pipeline channelling gas to Europe from newly discovered east Mediterranean reserves. European governments and Israel agreed in April to move forward with a Mediterranean pipeline project to carry natural gas from Israel to Europe, setting a target date of 2025 for completion. Europe is keen to diversify its energy supplies, and Greece wants to promote itself as a hub for the transit of gas from the eastern Mediterranean to the continent.

WPX forms JV to Develop Permian Assets

File Image: a typical natural gas pipeline header. (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Pisotsckii)

U.S. oil and gas producer WPX Energy Inc said it had agreed to form a joint venture with privately held Howard Energy Partners to develop oil gathering and natural gas processing infrastructure in the Permian basin. The joint venture will complete the construction of a pipeline, already started by WPX, and develop a new natural gas processing plant, the company said. The pipeline is designed to move about 125,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd), while the natural gas plant will have an initial capacity of 400 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d). WPX said it would receive $300 million upfront in cash from Howard Energy.

OPEC: Oil Market to 'Rebalance' More Slowly

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) xmentoys)

OPEC output jumps 336,000 bpd in May led by exempt producers. OPEC on Tuesday said a long-awaited rebalancing of the oil market was under way at a "slower pace" and reported that its own output in May jumped due to gains in nations exempt from a pact to reduce supply. In a monthly report, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said its output rose by 336,000 barrels per day (bpd) in May to 32.14 million bpd led by a rebound in Nigeria and Libya, which were exempted from supply cuts because unrest and conflict had curbed their output.

Hedge Funds Turn Bearish on U.S. NatGas

File Image: An LNG Carrier at Sea (CREDIT MISC)

Hedge funds have turned much more bearish towards U.S. natural gas prices after stocks built much more than expected at the start of the summer cooling season. Hedge funds and other money managers cut their net long position in the two main futures and options contracts linked to Henry Hub prices by 765 billion cubic feet in the week to June 6. Fund managers cut their net long position by a total of 1,349 billion cubic feet over the two weeks since May 23, after boosting positions by 1,721 billion cubic feet over the previous 12 weeks (http://tmsnrt.rs/2rRAYZa).

ConocoPhillips: Qatar LNG Project Not Affected by Arab Tension

ConocoPhillips said on Thursday that production and exports of liquefied natural gas from an investment project in Qatar have not been affected by growing Middle East diplomatic tensions. Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates on Monday cut ties with Qatar, accusing the country of supporting extremism. Qatar has denied the allegations. Concerns have grown that global access to Qatar's LNG could be cut, especially after some Persian Gulf ports said they would not accept Qatari-flagged vessels. Houston-based ConocoPhillips owns a 30 percent stake in an LNG project operated by Qatargas Operating Co Ltd…

Total Looks at Downstream to Spur Gas Demand

France's Total SA is looking to invest in gas and power infrastructure projects in Morocco and South Africa as it seeks to open new markets, the company's head of gas said on Thursday. Total will roughly double its liquefied natural gas (LNG) portfolio by 2020 to 15 million tonnes per year, but the company needs to look at deals that will give it footholds in new markets and capture new gas buyers, Laurent Vivier said. Morocco plans to build a project, worth up to $4.6 billion, which includes the import of up to 7 billion cubic metres of gas by 2025…

Victoria Mulls Floating LNG Plan

Australia's Victoria state is working with AGL Energy to study building a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal to beef up local gas supply, even as the country is set to become the world's largest LNG exporter. Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews is under pressure to bolster regional gas supplies after barring all onshore gas drilling, as the southeast Australian state looks to save manufacturing jobs threatened by soaring energy prices. LNG exports from northeastern Australia - particularly the Gladstone LNG plant run by Santos Ltd - have been pulling gas out of the domestic market…

Equatorial Guinea Eyes New FLNG Plants

Equatorial Guinea, which is developing Africa's first deep-water floating Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) platform, sees scope for another two similar platforms by December, the petroleum minister said on Monday. The former Spanish colony is developing the multi-billion dollar Fortuna floating LNG project in partnership with Ophir Energy and has selected seven companies for as many blocks in its 2016 licensing round, minister Gabriel Obiang Lima told delegates attending an African oil conference in Cape Town.   (Reporting by Wendell Roelf)

Genel's Rothschild Quits as Turkey Gas Focus Grows

Departure follows that of Chairman Tony Hayward; Company now focused on Turkish gas market. Genel Energy co-founder Nathaniel Rothschild quit on Monday in the latest high-profile departure from the loss-making Iraqi Kurdistan oil producer, which is switching its focus to the Turkish gas market. The majority of the board of Genel, which also announced the exit of non-executive director Simon Lockett, is now made up of Turkish nationals after co-founder Tony Hayward, the former BP chief executive, and chief financial officer Ben Monaghan, an ex-JP Morgan banker, left in recent months.

BP, Eni Deepen Blockchain Trading in European Gas

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Javier Castro)

Oil majors BP and Eni are deepening their foray into blockchain technology, starting to run blockchain trades in parallel with their live trading systems, according to developer BTL Group. The energy traders, together with Austria's Wien Energie, had previously tested BTL's Interbit blockchain platform over 12 weeks, carrying out trades in European natural gas. For example, the blockchain system found a discrepancy in the volume allocation of a trade of French gas sold by Eni to BP, eradicating a mistake that would have cost time at a later stage, a spokesman for BTL said. Eni and BP declined to comment.

Delfin Project Gains US Approval to Export LNG

Image: Delfin LNG

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has approved a long-term application to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the first offshore project, Delfin LNG, LLC. Exports in the amount of 1.8 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of natural gas are approved from Delfin’s proposed offshore Louisiana floating LNG terminal in the Gulf of Mexico. Development of the Delfin project offshore of Cameron Parish, La. will include the construction of floating liquefaction and storage vessels. Due to its offshore location, the environmental review of Delfin was led by the Maritime Administration (MARAD) and the U.S. Coast Guard. U.S.

BP, Rosneft Agree to Cooperate in Gas Business

Rosneft and BP have signed an agreement on strategic cooperation in gas and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in respect to the sale and purchase of natural gas in Europe. The two companies agreed to develop integrated cooperation in gas and aim to jointly implement gas projects in Russia and abroad focused on gas exploration and production, LNG production, supply and marketing. Rosneft and BP also reconfirmed their mutual interest in cooperation in European gas marketing. According to the MoU, Rosneft and BP's wholly…

BP to Develop Gas Project offshore Trinidad

BP announces two major discoveries in Trinidad and Tobago; new project to offset BP's declining production in country. BP has given the go-ahead for its $500 million Angelin offshore gas field development in Trinidad and Tobago to help offset declining production in one of the company's main hubs. Drilling at the Angelin field, some 60 kilometres off the south-east coast of Trinidad in a water-depth of approximately 65 metres, is set to begin in the third quarter of 2018. First gas from the facility is expected in the first quarter of 2019, BP said in a statement.

LNG Sellers, Asian Buyers Spar Over Contract Terms

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Fotmart)

A spat brewing between Qatar, the world's No.1 producer of liquefied natural gas (LNG), and its biggest customers in Japan underscores rising tensions between buyers and sellers of the super-chilled fuel as a supply glut unbalances the market. Importers of LNG having been pushing for greater benefits amid the surplus, signing new, cheaper contracts that give them more flexible terms, while exporters try to preserve long-term supply deals written in their favour during tighter markets. Worried some buyers are becoming too bold in their push for an advantage…

Saudi Aramco Hiring in Singapore

The trading arm of oil giant Saudi Aramco is looking to step up hiring for its Singapore office as it pushes into the regional energy hub, three sources with knowledge of the matter said. The office aims to employ 10 to 15 staff by year-end after opening with one person in late 2015, said one of the sources. That would include operational, analytical and administrative workers. A spokesman for Saudi Aramco Products Trading Company did not answer calls from Reuters. "The main aim is for employees to support trading activities of the head office in Saudi Arabia," said the first source.

Golar FLNG Nearing Completion

Golar'LNG says that the FLNG Hilli Episeyo conversion is nearing completion. "The conversion of Hilli Episeyo is progressing to a tight but achievable schedule," said a company statement. All equipment has been installed and testing and precommissioning work is underway and will continue in Singapore until departure from the yard, which is expected to be in around six weeks. Seawater trials, storing-up and potentially LNG bunkering in Singapore will follow redelivery from the yard. A naming ceremony has been scheduled for July 2.

Chevron Resumes Gorgon LNG Train 1 Output

Chevron has restarted the first production line at its giant Gorgon liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility in Australia following an outage, a company spokesman said on Wednesday.   A failed measurement device in mid-May forced Chevron to idle Train 1 for repair and other routine work which was expected to last about a month.   "Production from Gorgon LNG Train 1 has resumed," a spokesman said.   "Trains 2 and 3 are running normally, and we continue to ship cargoes," he said.   The three-train project can produce 15.6 million tonnes of LNG annually.   Reporting by Oleg Vukmanovic 

Adani's Carmichael Mine is Coal's Game-breaker

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Carolyn Franks)

The world's biggest planned coal mine is once again lurching toward the finish line as India's Adani Enterprises moves ahead with a final decision on its Carmichael project in Australia. Even if Adani does approve the $4 billion thermal coal and rail project in central Queensland state, the venture is shaping up as a turning point for coal in Australia, with consequences for the industry across Asia. The first implication of the Carmichael saga is that it shows that major coal projects in Australia need subsidies from governments to be viable…

Total CEO: Iran Gas Deal Should be Done Before Summer

French oil major Total still plans to conclude the Iran South Pars gas deal before summer, its chief executive Patrick Pouyanne told journalists on the sidelines of the company's annual general meeting.   Pouyanne said the signing of U.S. sanctions waivers, among other hurdles, cleared the path for the deal to be signed.   Total said earlier in February that a final decision on the deal hinged on the new U.S. administration renewing the waivers.   Pouyanne also added he had met Iranian oil minister Bijan Zanganeh in Vienna on the sidelines of the OPEC meeting.   Reporting by Bate Felix

Sarawak State Govt Seeks Stake in LNG Train

Malaysia's Sarawak state government said it is negotiating with Petroliam Nasional Berhad to acquire a 10 percent equity stake in a liquefied natural gas (LNG) production facility at Petronas' LNG complex in Bintulu, Sarawak. The government is looking to buy a stake in the LNG Train 9 facility, the site's ninth liquefaction unit, which can produce 3.6 million tonnes of LNG per year. It began its commercial operations in January, boosting production capacity at the Petronas LNG complex to 30 million tonnes per year. "The…

Chile to Export Gas to Argentina to Cover Winter Demand

Chile will send some 276 million cubic meters of gas from June to Argentina to help its neighbor cope with demand in the southern hemisphere winter, Chile's state-run oil and gas distributor ENAP said Friday. Last year, Chile began sending liquefied natural gas to Argentina for the first time. Although energy investment in Argentina is increasing, it is still a long way from regaining the self-sufficiency it lost in 2010. Before the mid-2000s, it was an important supplier to Chile. The agreement would allow for the equivalent of around 3 million cubic meters to be piped daily from June 1 to Aug.

POSCO Seeks June LNG Cargo via Tender

South Korea's POSCO is seeking a liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo for delivery on June 26 to 30 via tender, trade sources with knowledge of the tender said on Friday.   The tender will close on May 22, the sources added. (Reporting by Mark Tay; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)

Oregon County Won't Block LNG Terminal

File Image: Credit QGTC

A coastal Oregon county overwhelmingly rejected a ballot measure aimed at blocking a proposed natural gas terminal dealing a blow to what was the latest in a series of efforts to thwart energy projects across the Pacific Northwest. The measure, had it passed, would have banned transport of fossil fuels not intended for local use through Coos County, located about 200 miles (322 kms) south of Portland. Around 76 percent of votes were cast against the measure, with 24 percent in favor, according to unofficial results posted on the Coos County government website late Tuesday.

Japan to Buy 100,000 Tons of LPG

Japan will likely conduct a tender in the autumn to buy up to 100,000 tonnes of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) for national stockpiles, a trade ministry official with direct knowledge of the matter said on Tuesday. The fuel, often referred to as butane or propane, will be stored at a stockpiling base in Kurashiki in the country's west by the end of November. The step comes as Japan looks to boost its LPG state stockpile to at least 50 days' worth of national imports, or about 1.38 million tonnes. It wants to reduce the impact from any supply disruptions in the Middle East…

Oregon County Mulls LNG Terminal Ban

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Fotmart)

A coastal Oregon county will vote Tuesday on a ballot measure to block a proposed natural gas terminal, the latest in a series of efforts to thwart energy projects across the Pacific Northwest. The measure would ban transport of fossil fuels not intended for local use through Coos County, located about 200 miles (322 kms) south of Portland. Backers have called the initiative a response to a $7.6 billion proposal by Calgary-based Veresen Inc, to build a facility in the county where natural gas would be liquefied and transferred to tanker ships for sale abroad. They have cast the measure as a local refusal to contribute to global warming.

Pieridae Seeks Natural Gas Acquisitions, CEO Says

Pieridae Energy Ltd, the company behind a proposed liquefied natural gas terminal on Canada's east coast, is looking to buy producing assets in western Canada or in the Marcellus shale play in the United States, its chief executive said on Monday. Alfred Sorensen told Reuters in a phone interview that Calgary-based Pieridae wanted to buy about 200 million cubic feet a day of natural gas production to supply its terminal and would consider buying a company or just assets. Privately held Pieridae is developing the Goldboro LNG project in Nova Scotia, with a targeted in-service date of 2021 and capacity of 10 million metric tonnes a year.

Chevron Reports Outage at Gorgon LNG Plant

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Pisotsckii)

Chevron Corp has shut the first production line at its giant Gorgon liquefied natural gas (LNG) export plant in Australia and expects the outage to last about a month in order to replace a faulty device, a spokesman said on Monday. "Production on Gorgon Train 1 was stopped on May 12 due to a failure of a flow measurement device," the company said in a statement. "Train 1 is expected to be down approximately one month for this replacement and we will take this opportunity to perform other routine maintenance," it said. Chevron has struggled to maintain stable production at the $54 billion project…

Oil Firms, on Track for Biggest Gain in Five Weeks

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Edelweiss)

U.S. oil inventories fell by more than forecast last week; OPEC-led production curbs expected to be extended. Oil prices on Friday were on track for their biggest weekly gain in five weeks, helped by expectations of an extension of OPEC-led output cuts and buoyed by falling U.S. crude inventories. Benchmark Brent was trading 5 cents higher at $50.82 per barrel at 1141 GMT, on target for a 3.5 percent rise on the week. U.S. light crude oil was up 2 cents at $47.85. A larger-than-expected fall last week in U.S. crude inventories <C-STK-T-EIA>…

ETP: U.S. Drilling Ban Won't Delay Ohio Gasline

File Image: A typical gas pipeline header arrangement. (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) pisotckii)

Completion of the Rover pipeline, the biggest natural gas pipe under construction in the United States, is not expected to be delayed by a U.S. federal order to stop new drilling to install pipe, Energy Transfer Partners LP said on Thursday. The company spilled more than 2 million gallons of drilling fluid - mostly water and clay - in Ohio wetlands in April during construction of Rover, prompting regulators to halt drilling in certain areas. The line, once finished, will have the ability to carry enough gas to supply 15 million U.S. and Canadian homes.

Crowley to Supply LNG in Puerto Rico

Photo: Crowley

Crowley Maritime Corp.’s  liquefied natural gas  (LNG) services group has been awarded a multi-year contract to supply additional volumes of containerized, U.S.-sourced LNG to a major pharmaceutical company’s manufacturing plants in Puerto Rico. The contract, executed through Crowley’s Carib Energy LLC subsidiary, extends a 2014 contract awarded to Crowley for LNG supply for the facilities by expanding LNG services to additional plants. The contract includes the fuel supply and transportation of LNG, which helps the customer yield substantially lowered emissions and provides an alternative to their current fuel source, diesel.

Noble Group's Shares Plunge, Elman Steps Down

Decline in shares is biggest on record. Noble Group Ltd reported a quarterly loss that pummelled its shares by a record 33 percent, stoking worries the Singapore-listed commodity trader was failing to recover from a crisis-wracked two years despite a deep restructuring. As previously flagged, founder Richard Elman, 77, said on Thursday he was stepping down as executive chairman to take on a non-executive board role as chairman emeritus. Board member Paul Brough, a former senior partner at KPMG, becomes executive chairman with immediate effect, and would lead a strategic review.

Egypt Weans Itself off Foreign Gas

Egypt seeking to defer up to 25 LNG cargoes this year-trade; talks with trade houses and producers ongoing. Egypt is holding talks with its liquefied natural gas (LNG) suppliers to defer contracted shipments this year and aims to cut back on purchases in 2018, as surging domestic gas production squeezes out demand for costly foreign imports. Cairo's desire for gas self-sufficiency by the end of 2018 bodes ill for traders having to reshuffle LNG out of the country amid concern over the impact on global gas prices if replacement markets for the world's eighth-biggest importer of the super-cooled fuel are not found fast enough.

Canada to Roll Out First Propane Export Terminal

Photo: Royal Vopak

Royal Vopak and AltaGas have entered into a joint venture and will invest together in the development of the Ridley Island Propane Export Terminal (RIPET). RIPET is expected to be the first propane export facility off the west coast of Canada. The project is to be designed to ship 1.2 million tonnes of propane per annum, with approximately 96,000 cubic meters of storage capacity. The facility is expected to be commissioned in Q1 2019. Vopak will take a 30 percent interest in RIPET. Vopak's investment is underpinned by long…

Petronas Targets New Markets for LNG

Photo :Petronas

Malaysian oil company Petronas is looking to tap new markets to sell liquefied natural gas, including as fuel for ships, the head of its upstream operations told Reuters on Monday. State-owned Petroliam Nasional Berhad, known as Petronas, also sees significant growth potential for LNG in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and some parts of Southeast Asia, its upstream CEO Mohd Anuar Taib said. "The key for us in the LNG business is to figure out a way to broaden and expand the customer base," Anuar said, adding that lower prices have opened up new markets that had previously been unable to afford LNG.

Tokyo Gas buys stake in Castleton's Texas Unit

File Image: a typical natural gas pipeline installation. (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) pisotckii)

Japan's biggest city gas supplier Tokyo Gas Co said on Monday it has acquired a 30 percent stake in a subsidiary of Castleton Commodities International LLC, its first equity investment in a U.S. upstream company. Tokyo Gas did not reveal the price for the stake in Castleton Resources LLC, which owns and operates over 160,000 net acres of leasehold in East Texas with access to the Cotton Valley and Haynesville Shale and has a net production of about 238 million cubic feet equivalent per day, equal to 1.65 million tonnes per annum of liquefied natural gas (LNG).

ENGIE, AES to Expand LNG Partnership to Central America

ENGIE and The AES Corporation have agreed to enter into a joint venture to market and sell liquefied natural gas (LNG) to third parties in Central America. The joint venture will utilize the Costa Norte LNG terminal currently under construction in Colón, Panama, which is owned 50/50 by AES and Inversiones Bahía. The total capacity of the Costa Norte LNG terminal is approximately 1.5 million metric tons per annum (mtpa), of which 25 percent will be used for the 380 MW AES Colón CCGT currently under construction on the same site. ENGIE will supply up to 0.4 mtpa of LNG to the CCGT beginning in 2018.

ABS, DSME Pact on Novel FLNG Concept

LNG·LPG carriers. Photo: Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering

ABS signed an agreement with Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co. (DSME) to support safety and apply class guidance to a conceptual Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) unit. “We are pleased to sign this agreement and work with DSME to support new innovations and technology advancements in the offshore industry,” says ABS Executive Vice President of Global Offshore Ken Richardson. “As gas continues to play an increasingly important role in the global energy mix and industry looks to develop new resources, ABS remains committed to its mission of advancing safety,” Ken added.

Changing the Landscape of LNG Production

PFLNG Satu (Photo: © TechnipFMC plc.)

Successful completion of the Petronas Floating LNG facility (PFLNG) Satu is a milestone for the oil and gas industry and for the Malaysian energy giant. Designed by consortium leader TechnipFMC and fabricated at the Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering yard in South Korea, PFLNG Satu achieved the first-ever production of LNG offshore in December 2016. The 365-meter by 60-meter facility processes, produces and offloads LNG in situ, directly above natural gas reservoirs. FLNG allows the monetization of remote, marginal and stranded offshore gas fields that cannot be developed economically via conventional means.

Gail India Seeks Three LNG Cargoes in H2

Gail India has launched a tender to buy three liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargoes in the second half of 2017, trade sources said.   The importer is seeking a cargo for July, September and November, they said. (Reporting by Oleg Vukmanovic, editing by David Evans)

VW Mulls Gas-powered cars with Exxon, Gazprom

Volkswagen is in talks with Exxon Mobil Corp and Gazprom to back its efforts to promote cars running on natural gas, Chief Executive Matthias Mueller told Austria's ORF radio. Europe's biggest carmaker is working on a shift towards electric cars and fuel-saving technologies as it looks to lower its fleet-wide carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and to overcome its diesel emissions scandal. "We are now really trying to think out of the box and find solutions that can be helpful at least in this transition period of 10 to 20 years," Mueller said in the interview aired on Wednesday.

Australia Gas Export Restrictions Counterproductive

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Fotmart)

When governments adopt new policies the benchmark for success should be that the change works, is efficient and fair to all parties and does not create unintended consequences. The decision by the Australian government to restrict exports of natural gas if the domestic market is constrained meets none of these criteria, although it may just persuade an increasingly angry public that the authorities are doing something. Whether the new policy does serve some short-term political objective shouldn't distract from the view…

Pembina Adds Natgas Infrastructure in Veresen Deal

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Pisotckii)

Pembina to pay as much as C$1.52 bln in cash, 99.5 mln in shares; offer at 22.5 pct premium to Veresen's last close. Pembina Pipeline Corp said it would buy smaller rival Veresen Inc in a stock-and-cash deal valued at C$9.7 billion ($7.10 billion), including debt, giving the Canadian pipeline operator access to natural gas pipelines and processing infrastructure. The combined company will have a strong position in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin, home to the world's third largest crude reserves. A rebound in oil…

Australia Plans to Limit LNG Exports

© Carabay / Adobe Stock

Australia's conservative government unveiled a radical plan on Thursday to restrict exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) at times when domestic shortages push up local prices, aiming to ease soaring energy costs for local manufacturers. The plan would allow Australia's resources minister to impose controls on LNG exports on advice from the market operator and regulator, as the government seeks to cap domestic gas prices, which have become a political hot potato. "It's not a threat. This will be export controls. They will not be able to export gas if that has the consequence of reducing the availability of gas for the Australian market…

In Demand: Hoegh LNG’s Sveinung Stoehle

The business model: Hoegh LNG president and CEO, Sveinung Støhle. Photo: handout

Satisfied with the recent opening of a new floating LNG import terminal in Turkey plus contract successes in Africa and Asia, Hoegh LNG CEO and president, Sveinung Stoehle, cautiously lets us into his stylish Oslo offices for a bit of “disclosure”. The Hoegh business model is winning out, and now six floating storage and regasification units, or FSRUs, are in operation with four newbuilds on the way. The terminal in Turkey was built in just six months: “It would be years, not months, for a land-based gas terminal,” Stohle asserts.

Novatek to Ensure LNG Projects Competitive with Qatar's LNG

Russia's largest non-state natural gas producer Novatek will work hard to ensure its future liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects are competitive with similar plants in Qatar, a company official said on Thursday. Novatek Chief Financial Officer Mark Gyetvay also told a conference call the global LNG demand has been robust.     (Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin)

Poland to Receive first US LNG Delivery in June

File Image: CREDIT GAC

Poland will receive its first liquefied natural gas supplies (LNG) from the United States in mid-June as a result of a deal Polish gas firm PGNiG signed with Cheniere Energy, state-run PGNiG said on Thursday. Cheniere Energy will make the spot delivery at the Swinoujscie terminal on the Baltic Sea. Poland, which consumes around 15-16 billion cubic metres (bcm) of gas annually, built its first LNG terminal in Swinoujscie as part of a bigger plan to reduce reliance on gas it imports from Russia's Gazprom. The terminal, which started commercial operations in 2016, has a capacity of 5 bcm per year.

US Authorizes Non-FTA LNG Export from Golden Pass

Photo: Golden Pass LNG Terminal

The U.S. Department of Energy announced that it has signed an order authorizing Golden Pass Products LLC to export domestically produced liquefied natural gas (LNG) to countries that do not have a free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States. Golden Pass is authorized to export LNG up to the equivalent of 2.21 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of natural gas to any non-FTA country not prohibited by U.S. law or policy from the Golden Pass Terminal near Sabine Pass, in Jefferson County, Texas. With the dramatic increase in domestic natural gas production, the U.S. is transitioning to become a net exporter of natural gas.

Argentina Authorizes Natural Gas Exports to Uruguay

Argentina's government authorized the export of up to 350,000 cubic meters (12.4 million cubic feet) of natural gas per day to neighboring Uruguay for the next two years, its official gazette said on Wednesday. Argentina is seeking to ramp up production by exploiting one of the world's largest shale reserves, Vaca Muerta, but it remains a net importer of gas, primarily from Bolivia. Argentina must import equivalent amounts of gas to what it is exporting to Uruguay, the gazette said. A total volume of 255.5 million cubic meters (9 billion cubic feet) is allowed for export to Uruguay.

Petrobangla, Summit Pact for 2nd LNG Terminal

Pic: RPGCL, Petrobangla Group

Bangladesh's State-owned Petrobangla has inked final deals with Summit LNG Terminal Co to development the country's second floating LNG terminal. The Financial Express reported that Summit group will install a Floating Storage and Re-gasification Unit (FSRU) at Moheshkhali Island in the Cox's Bazar. The terminal will have 500 million meter standard cubic feet per day (mmscfd) capacity, which would go on operation after 18 months. The cost of the second project is estimated at $400 million-500 million, which Summit will implement jointly with US based General Electric as an 20% equity investment partner.

South Korean Tender Stirs LNG Market

© Oleksandr Prykhodko / Adobe Stock

Asian spot LNG prices jumped this week, buoyed by hopes Korea Gas Corp's new tender would match past buying sprees and by emerging demand from China and Japan. Spot prices for June delivery rose to $5.70 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), a 20 cent jump over last week, but traders cited sharply divergent views on pricing, saying the disagreements contributed to market inertia. Still, Korea Gas Corp's Thursday tender for June and July supply - set to close on April 26 - immediately stirred up bullish offers, rescuing an otherwise muted trading week.

ConocoPhillips looks to Aussie Transcontinental LNG Pipeline

File Image: A typical natural gas pipeline arrangement (CREDIT AdobeStock / (c) pisotckii)

ConocoPhillips will consider diverting natural gas from fields in northern Australia along a proposed transcontinental pipeline that would link directly to markets in the southeast, a senior executive told Reuters on Thursday. The U.S. oil major is also leaning towards developing the Barossa gas field offshore northern Australia, with a final decision due in early 2019, Kayleen Ewin, the company's vice president for sustainability, communications and external affairs, said in an interview. Ewin said the proposed transcontinental pipe would open Australia's domestic market for northern producers.

Korea Gas Corp Launches Tender for June, July LNG Cargoes

Korea Gas Corp has launched a tender seeking to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargoes for delivery in June and July, trade sources said on Thursday. The scope of the company's demand is unclear as each supplier has a limit on the number of cargoes it is allowed to offer, but the firm has not spelled out an upper limit for deliveries, trade sources said. (Reporting by Oleg Vukmanovic)

Blackstone to buy EagleClaw Midstream

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) pisotckii)

EagleClaw Midstream Ventures LLC said on Monday it agreed to be bought by funds managed by Blackstone Group LP for about $2 billion.   EagleClaw Midstream Ventures LLC, which owns and operates natural gas pipelines and processing facilities, said the all-cash deal includes about $1.25 billion in debt, financed by Jefferies LLC.   EagleClaw is the largest privately held midstream operator in the Permian's Delaware Basin in West Texas. Reporting by Arathy S Nair 

May LNG Cargo Prices Fall on Waning Demand

File Image: a typical LNG carrier at sea (CREDIT: MISC)

Asian spot LNG prices edged lower this week amid thin trade for May cargoes and as focus shifts towards June supplies. Spot prices for May delivery of LNG in Asia fell by 35 cents to $5.40 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), as interest for May cargoes weaken because most end-users have already secured their necessary feedstock for the month. Prices for June delivery of LNG in Asia was pegged slightly higher at $5.50/mmBtu amid expectations that demand could return as North Asian buyers begin purchasing cargoes to meet summer demand.

New US Pipelines to Drive Natural Gas Boom as Exports Surge

© Yauheni Chazlou / Adobe Stock

U.S. energy firms are scrambling to finish a slew of pipelines that will unleash rich reserves of shale gas in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio as the nation prepares to become one of the world’s top natural gas exporters. The pipelines are expected to boost output from shale fields in the three states by giving producers access to new domestic and international markets. Those states could supply about a third of all U.S. natural gas once the pipeline expansion is complete, up from about 25 percent now, according to projections from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

Gas Pipeline Leak Repairs Begun in Cook Inlet

Divers have begun repairing a leak from an 8-inch natural gas pipeline in the Middle Ground Shoal area in Alaska's Cook Inlet, Hilcorp Energy Co said on Monday. Endangered beluga whales and other marine mammals live in the inlet. The company shut two Alaskan oil production platforms two weeks ago after reducing pressure on a leaking natural gas pipeline in Cook Inlet. At the reduced rate, the leak is estimated to be around 85 to 115 thousand cubic feet per day, the company said in late March. Hilcorp said divers, who began the work on Friday, found the leak and were preparing to install a temporary clamp to stop it.

Japan Spot LNG Contract Price at 5-Month Low

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / Fotmart)

Prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) spot cargoes for Japan, the world's top buyer, fell to a five-month low in March from a two-year high the month before, official data showed on Tuesday. The average price of spot LNG contracted last month was $6.20 per million British thermal units, according to monthly data from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), down $2.30 from the previous month and the lowest since last October. That was broadly in line with the wider Asian benchmark for last month due to tepid demand for the cleaner fuel…

Canada, G7 Partners to Push LNG

Minister Carr and G7 Colleagues Advance Cooperation in Energy Security and Clean Technology Development. Photo: Official Twitter page of Natural Resources Ministry, Canada.

The Government of Canada recognizes the critical role of international cooperation on energy, as it impacts economic and social development, innovation, safety and security, environmental protection, and climate change. Canada's Minister of Natural Resources, the Honourable Jim Carr, reinforced the Government's commitment to advancing lasting, good jobs in energy, ensuring energy access and security around the world and expanding the clean-energy economy while at the G7 Energy Ministerial in Rome, Italy, this week. Minister Carr joined his colleagues from France…

TMC Compressors for FRSU Newbuild

International compressor supplier TMC Compressors (TMC) said it has been awarded a contract by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DMSE) to supply a marine compressed air system to a newbuild floating storage and regasification unit (FRSU). TMC’s scope of work includes engineering, manufacturing and supply of a complete compressed air system for the FRSU, which is being built by DSME for BW LNG. Under the contract, TMC will supply 3 x 40 kW frequency controlled control air compressors and 3 x 40 kW service air compressors. The contract value is undisclosed. “Any FRSU is a vital component in the LNG value chain.

Heavy Lift: Cryogenic Heat Exchanger Installed

Photo: Mammoet

The second of three planned Main Cryogenic Heat Exchanger (MCHE) installations at a large liquefaction project in southwest Louisiana marked a milestone for the U.S. Gulf Coast project.   Heavy lift and transportation services provider Mammoet used 40 axle-lines of Self-Propelled Modular Transporters (SPMTs) to transport the equipment to the installation site. The lift of the MCHE, which is 150 feet long, 16 feet in diameter and weighs a total of 576,000 lbs. (262 metric tons), was a tandem lift utilizing a Terex-Demag CC-2800 crawler crane as the main crane and a Liebherr LR-1300sx crawler crane on the tail.

LNG Innovation: Wison's LNG Distributor

Image: Wison

The Wison-LNG-Distributor (LNGD) is a new multi-functional carrier with scalable capacity between 5000 to 20,000 cu. m. Wison-LNGD integrates the functions of LNG loading, bunkering and container delivery, which could make regional LNG redistribution more affordable and efficient. Wison’s LNG Distributor has been purposely designed to distribute partial loads to coastal areas in regions such as Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia, the Caribbean, and Northern Europe. Being designed to operate at a shallow draft of 4.5m, the LNGD can deliver cargoes in areas where LNG carriers with similar capacity cannot access.

Oil Surplus or Scarcity? Shale Makes it Hard to Predict

File Image: AdobeStock (Edel Weiss)

Goldman Sachs sees large oil surplus in two years, but the forecast is at odds with most predictions of looming shortage. The shale oil boom has transformed the U.S. and global energy sector to such an extent that it has upended traditional supply dynamics and made forecasts far more polarised. Investment banks, many of which finance new projects, along with oil majors such as Total and Eni, have warned that huge spending cuts caused by a plunge in oil prices since 2014 would lead to a supply crunch in the next two years.

Hedge Funds Build Bullish U.S. Natural Gas Position

Hedge funds are more bullish about U.S. natural gas prices than at any time for almost three years, according to position records published by regulators and exchanges. By April 4, hedge funds and other money managers had amassed a net long position in the two main futures and options contracts linked to U.S. gas prices equivalent to 3,280 billion cubic feet (http://tmsnrt.rs/2nxfzE0). Fund managers had boosted their net long position for five consecutive weeks by a total of 1,082 billion cubic feet, taking it to the highest level since May 2014 (http://tmsnrt.rs/2nZFHU1).

Poland has Natgas Exports 'understanding' with U.S.

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / Fotmart)

Poland's desire to cut natural gas imports from Russia has led to an "understanding" with the United States to work toward a deal to export liquefied natural gas to its new Baltic Sea terminal, the country's deputy prime minister said on Wednesday. Mateusz Morawiecki, who is also the minister of economic development and finance, said in an interview that discussions with new U.S. "The word agreement is probably premature. Understanding? Absolutely," Morawiecki said as he wrapped up a three-day U.S. visit with stops in Washington, Boston and New York.

LNG Turns to Trading, Risk to Maintain Market Share

File Image: A typical LNG STS transfer underway (CREDIT: Exelerate)

Woodside, Shell see big opportunity in small-scale LNG. Producers of liquefied natural gas (LNG) have shot themselves in the foot with oversupply, and face calls for flexibility and greater competition from other fuels that may force them to take more risks and start trading just like other commodity dealers. That's a big change for a market long dominated by large producers such as Royal Dutch Shell and BP who provide major importers with fixed volumes under multi-decade contracts linked to the price of oil. Under the protection of these lucrative locked-in deals…

Belarus to Russia $720 mln in Gas Debts

Belarus has agreed to pay Russian gas firm Gazprom more than $720 million in arrears for gas supplies, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said on Monday.   Dvorkovich added that Russia was renewing oil supplies to Belarus of 24 million tonnes a year and that Gazprom would give Belarus discounts on gas supplies in 2018 and 2019.   Earlier on Monday, the Russian and Belarussian presidents said they had resolved all the disputes between them over energy.   Reporting by Denis Pinchuk

Douglas-Westwood: The Great Global Gas Surplus

Global Liquefaction Capacity 2009-2021 (Image: Douglas-Westwood)

The production of LNG in recent years has increased dramatically. According to Westwood Global Energy data, LNG liquefaction capacity increased from 121 million tons per annum (mmtpa) in 2000 to nearly 270 mmtpa in 2010, and will reach just over 400 mmtpa by the end of 2017. A wave of ‘mega-projects’, each costing tens of billions of dollars, have been completed in the Middle East and Australasia over this time. With depressed spot prices and further capacity due to come onstream, the outlook for the sector appeared grim. However, there are now signs that the market may start to correct through a supply-side response.

Denmark Receives Nord Stream 2 Pipeline Application

The Danish Energy Agency has received an application from Nord Stream 2, a consortium consisting of Russia's Gazprom and international partners, seeking permission to construct part of a disputed pipeline through Danish waters. "The Danish Energy Agency will now look into the matter," it said in a statement. Last week, the European Union said it was seeking a mandate from members to negotiate with Russia over objections to its plans to build the pipeline to pump more gas to Europe via the Baltic Sea to Germany. Eastern…

Med Gas Pipeline Possible by 2025

Project may cost up to 6 billion euros; final investment decision could come by 2020. European and Israeli governments gave their support on Monday to moving forward with a Mediterranean pipeline project to carry natural gas from Israel to Europe, setting a target date of 2025 for completion. The planned 2,000 km (1,248 mile) pipeline aims to link gas fields off the coasts of Israel and Cyprus with Greece and possibly Italy, at a cost of up to 6 billion euros ($6.4 billion). "This is an ambitious project, which as the Commission…

ABS Published FSRU Development Guidance

ABS has published the ABS Guide for Building and Classing LNG Regasification Vessels, outlining guidance for classing LNG regasification vessels. “ABS has developed this industry-leading guidance based on extensive experience with the classification of LNG carriers,” says ABS Chairman, President and CEO Christopher J. Wiernicki. Floating LNG regasification uses specialized ships, commonly referred to as LNG regasification vessels or Floating Storage and Regasification Units (FSRU), which offer a flexible and efficient way to deliver LNG to new and expanding markets.

Asian Spot LNG Prices Edge Higher

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock/Fotmart)

Asian spot LNG prices edged higher this week, the first rise in 11 weeks, as production outages in the Asia-Pacific region tightened supplies and as more prompt demand emerged. Spot price for May delivery of LNG in Asia rose by 30 cents to $5.70 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) as supply disruptions in Russia and Australia spooked buyers. Production at Sakhalin-2's LNG plant in Russia was temporarily suspended this week following an accident at one of its production platforms, while Chevron's Gorgon Train 2 production line was halted for maintenance works.

Total CEO: Novatek Russia LNG of Interest

The chief executive of French energy firm Total, Patrick Pouyanne, said on Thursday that his company was interested in future cooperation with Russia's Novatek on projects involving liquefied natural gas.   Reporting by Olesya Astakhova 

EU Seeks to Negotiate over Nord Stream Pipeline

Pipeline to pass through Danish, Swedish waters; project will bypass major gas transit route Ukraine. The European Union is seeking a mandate from its members to negotiate with Russia over plans for a gas pipeline under the Baltic Sea to Germany, an EU document showed, as some EU states fret the project will make Europe too reliant on Russian energy. The Nord Stream 2 pipeline would pass through Danish and Swedish waters and bypass Ukraine, a nation suffering from conflict and the main transit route for Russian gas heading to the EU.

Russia Ramping Up Arctic LNG Production

Photo: Total

Russia may produce more than 70 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) per year in its remote Arctic regions, the head of gas producer Novatek said on Wednesday. "The Gydan and Yamal peninsulas have a vast resource base that allows the production of over 70 million tonnes (of LNG); it is comparable to LNG production in Qatar", Leonid Mikhelson, the head and co-owner of Novatek told a conference. Novatek, which was put on the list of Russian companies sanctioned by the West over Moscow's role in the Ukraine crisis, plans to ship its first liquefied gas cargo from the Yamal LNG plant in December, mainly targeting Asian markets.

Japan Eyes LNG Projects in Russian Arctic

Russian Energy Minister said on Wednesday Japan was interested in taking part in projects to produce liquefied natural gas in the Arctic. "Japan today shows its interest in increasing cooperation in the Arctic, including construction of a plant to produce liquefied natural gas," Novak said in comments shown on Rossiya-24 TV station. He didn't specify what was the project that Japan was interested in. Russian largest non-state gas producer Novatek said earlier it planned to build new facilities to produce LNG in the Arctic.     (Reporting Vladimir Soldatkin)

Trump to Reverse Many Obama-era Climate Policies

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock)

U.S. President Donald Trump will sign an executive order on Tuesday to undo a slew of Obama-era climate change regulations, a move meant to bolster domestic energy production and create jobs, but environmentalists say the order is dangerous and vow to challenge it in court. The decree's main target is former President Barack Obama's Clean Power Plan, requiring states to slash carbon emissions from power plants - a critical element in helping the United States meet its commitments to a global climate change accord reached by nearly 200 countries in Paris in December 2015.

Trump Order to Ease Energy Rules Expected Tuesday

© Lukasz Z / Adobe Stock

President Donald Trump will sign an order on Tuesday aimed at making it easier for companies to produce energy in the United States, administration officials said on Sunday. Under Trump, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is aiming to aggressively roll back Obama-era environmental regulations. Trump plans to sign the executive order at the EPA to reduce "unnecessary regulatory obstacles that restrict the responsible use of domestic energy resources," a White House official said. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt told ABC's "This Week" the order would help reverse the Obama administration's anti-fossil fuel strategy.

Asian Spot LNG Prices Slip on Weak Demand

© Altin Osmanaj / Adobe Stock

Asian spot LNG prices fell this week on poor demand from major gas-consuming regions despite a slew of new purchase tenders. The May spot LNG contract fell by $0.25 cents to $5.40 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), with new production coming on stream in Australia and the United States. Analysts and traders mainly blamed low demand for driving prices lower. In the Middle East, Abu Dhabi was staying on the sidelines of the market and new solar power capacity in Dubai was eroding gas demand there. In Asia, imports by India, Argentina and China has lagged 2016 levels and South Korea needs less gas because of its new coal power plants.

Top LNG Buyers Form Alliance to Push for Flexible Contracts

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The world's biggest liquefied natural gas (LNG) buyers are clubbing together to secure more flexible supply contracts in a move that further shifts power to buyers rather than producers. Japan, China and South Korea are the world's biggest LNG importers, accounting for about 55 percent of global purchases, according to data from energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie. The countries' biggest respective buyers are joining together to extract concessions from producers that would give them supply flexibility such as having the right to re-sell imports to third parties, something they are not allowed to do under so-called destination restrictions.

ICE to Offer First US Gulf Coast LNG Futures Contract

With the United States about to become a net exporter of natural gas for the first time in 60 years, Intercontinental Exchange Inc said on Wednesday it would begin trading the first-ever U.S. liquefied natural gas futures contract in May. ICE said the contracts would be cash-settled against the Platts LNG Gulf Coast Marker price assessment and use Platts-derived U.S. GCM LNG forward curves for daily settlement purposes. The curves will have an initial term of 48 months. "Domestic and international market participants now have a risk-management solution that lays the foundation for a more effective means of hedging their spot and forward exposure…