Air pollution will drive up China's natural gas imports.
Europe Technologies Group
Shipbuilding & Repair Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago sign Memorandum of Agreement to repair LNG Carrier Membrane Containment Systems.
On November 25, 2016 Europe Technologies Group signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the Shipbuilding and Repair Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited in Nantes, France.
This Trinidad-based ship repair arrangement with the expert guidance of the Europe Technologies Group will provide both project management and skilled personnel in organising the working party with the ship-owner, the shipyard, the technology owner (which has around 310 LNG Carriers equipped with its technologies), the Classification Company and other service providers, to achieve the best on-time quality Cargo Containment System solutions required by LNG Carrier owners.
Trinidad and Tobago is also the sixth largest exporter of Liquefied Natural Gas in the world having recently crossed its 3,000th LNG shipment safety milestone, since LNG exports commenced in 1999 from the twin-island State located in the southern Caribbean.
Two events have resulted in an exponential growth requirement for LNG Carrier repairs in the Atlantic Basin. These are: (i) newly expanded Panama Canal inaugurated on June 26, 2016 now being able to physically accommodate (92%) ninety-two percent of the World LNG Shipping Fleet. The second event is that of the United States of America recently becoming a net exporter of Liquefied Natural Gas with the commencement of exports in February 2016 from the Cheniere Energy Inc. (NYSEMKT: LNG) Sabine Pass LNG Terminal. This Terminal has a Platform Capacity in Aggregate of around 9% of the expected global LNG Market by 2020.
ABOUT EUROPE TECHNOLOGIES:
Europe Technologies is a global provider of solutions for the repair of membrane LNG Cargo Containment Systems. It possesses the experience and expertise on market leader’s membrane technologies (CS1, NO96 and derivatives, MARK III and derivatives). Its qualified technicians and managers are intervening and supporting many shipyards worldwide with no compromise on quality and on-time delivery. Europe Technologies is also supplying qualified materials, tooling and equipment for the working party. Beside this ship repair activity, Europe Technologies is an innovative industrial group with core competencies on materials & mechanical processes. With more than 350 employees within 8 subsidiaries it provides high-tech solutions to industrial markets such as Aerospace, Defence, Automotive, Medical, Food Industry, Infrastructures, Ship building. http://www.europetechnologies-lng.com/
ABOUT THE SRDC:
The Shipbuilding and Repair Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited (SRDC) is an organisation which represents some 60 local and global maritime cluster stakeholders. It is the commercial entity of the Shipbuilding and Repair Maritime Cluster established to promote and develop various maritime initiatives within Trinidad & Tobago and globally by the current Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, the Honourable Dr. Keith Rowley, MP when he served as a former Minister in the Ministry of Trade and Industry. At Present, the SRDC is in the process of establishing a new USD500 million newbuild shipyard port at La Brea, South-west Trinidad and Tobago. This shipyard port is to be built by China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd. (CHEC) and financed by The Export-Import Bank of China (ChinaExim).
Left - Right: Dr. Patrick Cheppe, CEO of Europe Technologies Group and Mr. Wilfred de Gannes, Chairman & CEO of the Shipbuilding and Repair Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited in Nantes, France on the 25th November, 2016.
TOFCO on final stretch with Juniper platform
(L-R) Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister Stuart Young, Venezuelan Oil Minister Nelson Martinez, and Petroleos de Venezuela President Eulogio del Pino listen as a translator speaks at a press conference in Caracas, to announce the signing of new agreements covering the construction, operation and maintenance of a 17 kilometre gas pipeline from Venezuela to Trinidad. Photo courtesy the Oil Ministry of Venezuela.
Above: Chartered by Shell and carrying a cargo from the Sabine Pass LNG terminal (USA) the 161,870 Cubic Metre 'MARAN GAS APOLLONIA' became the first LNG Carrier to transit the expanded Panama Canal on the 25th July, 2016. Ninety-two percent (92%) of the World LNG Carrier Fleet can now pass through the Canal.
Above: The LNG carrier 'BRITISH MERCHANT,' operated by BP Shipping departed Atlantic LNG at Point Fortin with its cargo destined for Mexico. It was the first LNG Carrier on July 26, 2016 from Trinidad and Tobago to make its way through the expanded Panama Canal.
Qatar's Q-Max LNG Carriers berthed alongside pier.
LNG Carrier being berthed alongside pier in People's Republic of China.
Above: bpTT's Juniiper Platform ready to be towed to installation site from the TOFCO Shipyard at La Brea, South-western, Trinidad and Tobago.
Above: LNG Carrier 'OAK SPIRIT' transit through the expanded Panama Canal.
December 21, 2016: According to a report by Reuters, China is expected to import about 3.33 million tonnes of LNG in December spurred by winter demand, boosting Asian prices to their highest in nearly two years.
This would easily top the record 2.66 million tonnes that landed in China in November as a cold snap across the north of the country spurred demand, the report said.
China is expected to import ten cargoes of the chilled fuel from the world’s top LNG exporter, Qatar in December as the pace from Australia slows due to the outage at Chevron’s giant Gorgon LNG plant on Barrow Island.
The report suggests that the country’s LNG imports rose this year due to due to growing use of long-term contracts by oil and gas majors CNPC, PetroChina, Sinopec and CNOOC.
The buying spree may also boost Asian LNG prices. They are currently at $9.30 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), the highest since January 2015 and more than double levels in April, the report said.
China’s imports have already surpassed the 20 million tonnes figure this year, according to the General Administration of Customs data.
The country imported 22.3 million tonnes in the January-November period. This compares to 19.63 million tonnes for the whole year of 2015.
China started importing LNG in 2006 and is currently the world’s third largest LNG importer– representing about 8% of global LNG imports in 2015.
The country’s LNG imports are expected to significantly rise in the next five years as it as it is seeking to cut its addiction to coal to reduce pollution.
December 7, 2016: Juniper will become BP Trinidad and Tobago’s 14th offshore production facility, but it is the company’s first subsea field development in the twin island republic. The development will include five subsea wells and promises a production capacity of approximately 590 million standard cubic feet a day (MMSCFD). Gas from Juniper will flow to the Mahogany B hub, via a new ten-kilometre flowline.
The Juniper facility will take gas from the Corallita and Lantana fields, located 50 miles off the south east coast of Trinidad, in water depth of approximately 360 feet.
Technip USA is the Engineering Procurement Construction (EPC) contractor of the jacket and topsides of the new Juniper platform, to be located off the south east coast of Trinidad. The contract also includes the offshore installation of subsea equipment for the Juniper project.
Following the commissioning of the Cannonball platform in 2005, four platforms – Mango, Cashima, Savonette and Serrette – were also locally designed and constructed, with more than 80% of the labour performed by Trinidad and Tobago nationals.
Drilling commenced in 2015, and first gas from the facility is expected in 2017. bpTT has a 100% working interest in the Juniper development.
Global gas demand is projected to grow by about 45 percent during the same period.
Demand is expected to grow in all major sectors with the majority coming from the power generation. Asia Pacific will contribute to the majority of the 45 percent growth as its demand doubles by 2040.
With the demand growth, LNG exports are expected to diversify. Europe and Asia Pacific are expected to account for about 90 percent of global imports as production decline in Europe is offset by the increase in LNG imports.
Natural gas production in North America will continue its growth, with the region becoming the largest LNG exporter.
Oak Spirit, a liquefied natural gas (LNG) carrier, delivered the first cargo produced in the contiguous United States (US LNG) to Joetsu LNG Terminal of Chubu Electric Power Company in Japan on January 6, 2017.
Jera, a joint venture created by Japan-based electric companies Tepco and Chubu Electric power, and the Houston-based LNG provider Cheniere Marketing International have entered into a sale and purchase agreement for the cargo, which was loaded onto the ship at Sabine Pass LNG Terminal in Louisiana, operated by Cheniere Energy Partners on December 7, 2016.
On its way to Japan, Oak Spirit traversed the Panama Canal.
The 173,000 cubic meter ship was handed over to its owner, Teekay LNG Partners, from South Korean shipbuilder Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) in August 2016.
Oak Spirit joined its sister vessel, the Creole Spirit, which was launched in June 2015.
Following its delivery, Oak Spirit started its five-year fee-based contract with Cheniere Energy, lifting volumes from Cheniere’s Sabine Pass LNG export facility alongside the Creole Spirit.
Although 2018 is touted as the year when the benefits of a recovering LNG market will be felt, 2017 will not be short on good news.
Momentum is building for a return to a healthy, balanced industry and will gain strength in the coming year. Volumes of LNG shipped by sea are expected to grow by 11 per cent in 2017, pushing global trade above 300 million tonnes per annum (mta) for the first time.
This follows an 8 per cent expansion in trade in 2016, an advance that reduced the number of idle LNG carriers from 40 to 20 during the year.
Of the five worldscale liquefaction trains due to commence commercial operations in 2017, four are in Australia – Gorgon Trains 2 and 3, Ichthys T1 and Wheatstone T1. Australia is expected to load 51.5 million tonnes (mt) in the fiscal year to end-June 2017, consolidating its position as the world’s second-largest LNG exporter behind Qatar.
The fifth is Sabine Pass T3 in Louisiana. Cheniere’s Sabine Pass export project has a two-year jump on its US rivals. It is only in 2018 that Cove Point and Cameron LNG will commence commercial operations. Freeport LNG and Corpus Christi LNG will follow in 2019.
By 2021 Japanese buyers will be receiving 14 mta of US LNG under long-term contracts, or 22 per cent of the 64.7 mta that the 14 new US liquefaction trains can produce.
Japan is the world’s largest LNG importer, accounting for 30 per cent of global trade. It will liberalise its gas market in April and is seeking more flexible LNG procurement, including enhanced LNG tradability, loosened destination restrictions and purchase prices not directly oil index linked.
The more open-ended arrangements agreed with US suppliers will help Japan. November’s decision by members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to reduce oil production volumes and strengthen prices will boost the competitive attractiveness of natural gas and LNG and increase pressure to break the traditional link between LNG and oil prices.
Although it didn’t lead the race to develop the world’s first floating LNG production (FLNG) vessel, Petronas is first across the finish line. Its 1.2 mta vessel PFLNG Satu has begun to produce LNG from the Kanowit gas field off Malaysia’s Borneo coast.
It is due to load the first cargo and start commercial operations in the first quarter of 2017. Unless the 0.5 mta FLNG Caribbean barge finds employment over the coming year, the next FLNG vessel to enter into service will be Golar’s FLNG Hilli, a converted LNG carrier, in Cameroon in late 2017/early 2018. Shell’s 3.7 mta Prelude will follow later in 2018, off the coast of Western Australia.
Meanwhile, gas buyer use of floating storage and regasification units (FSRUs) goes from strength to strength. Since 2007 FSRUs have opened more than 75 per cent of markets new to LNG.
As Golar LNG points out, a combination of falling energy prices, increasing gas availability and severe power shortages in many regions is prompting increased interest in FSRUs and the competitive cost and project timescale advantages they offer. Inquiries are increasing for FSRU newbuildings and for smaller conversion units.
At year-end, the 170,000m³ Hoegh Grace and the 145,000m³ FSRU Neptune (ex-GDF Suez Neptune) were positioned at Cartagena in Colombia and off Aliaga in Turkey, to enable the two countries to introduce FSRU-based imports. The recently completed Hoegh Grace is Colombia’s inaugural LNG receiving facility.
These are two of seven FSRU-based LNG import projects scheduled to come on stream over the next 12 months.
The Colombia and Turkey-based newcomers augment 19 existing FSRU schemes and push floaters’ contribution to global regasification capacity towards 15 per cent. At least three new FSRUs will follow in 2018. A further 50 FSRU project proposals are waiting in the wings.
Petronas will decide by April whether to press ahead with its 12 mta Pacific NorthWest LNG export project in British Columbia, Canada. If it’s a yes, Pacific NorthWest will be the first large onshore, greenfield LNG project sanctioned since Total and Novatek reached a final investment decision (FID) on Yamal LNG in December 2013.
Another, smaller project for which FID is expected soon is the Fortuna offshore scheme that Ophir Holdings and the Golar LNG/Schlumberger joint venture OneLNG are promoting in Equatorial Guinea. The participants aim to decide on the 2.2-2.5 mta initiative by June.
FID is also imminent on the Eni-led Coral South project, a second African FLNG venture. The planned floater, to exploit gas in Mozambique's Rovuma Basin, will process 3.3 mta of LNG.
Amid this LNG supply build-up, shipowners will benefit from rebounding demand in China and India and emerging new markets, facilitated by FSRUs.
Chinese LNG imports were on target for a 27 per cent jump in 2016, to around 25 mt. Year-on-year shipments to India were 36 per cent up by early November, expected to reach 20 mt for 2016. These rebounds highlight resurgent Chinese and Indian import volumes that should be sustained for at least five years.
Egypt and Pakistan have been strong performers among new FSRU markets. Egypt has booked about 60 LNG-import cargoes, more than 4 mt, for its two Ain Sokhna FSRUs in 2017. Pakistan is seeking a similar number of shipments and will launch a second FSRU at Karachi’s Port Qasim during the year.
In a separate tender, state-owned Pakistan LNG has requested bids for an additional 180 cargoes over 15 years
The fleet of LNG carriers in excess of 30,000m³ stands at 444 vessels, with some 20 surplus to current requirements. With some 33 ships due for delivery in 2017, trade volumes will expand slightly faster than cargo-carrying capacity over the next 12 months.
Somewhat worrying for shipowners is the fact that most of the new production coming on stream in 2017 is in Australia, fairly close to the main Asian markets.
On a more positive note, US exports will boost tonne-mile figures. Poten & Partners’ analysis of the first 26 Sabine Pass export shipments reveals that every 1 mt of cargo exported requires 1.75 ships. On this basis, the new US projects will require a total fleet of 113 ships.
Wood Mackenzie points out that a further 50 vessels will be needed to transport cargoes from export projects under construction and due on stream by the end of 2020. Given shipowner and charterer preferences for modern tonnage, this requirement translates into at least 40 newbuilding orders to be placed by the end of 2017 to guarantee 2020 deliveries.
A key indicator of the LNG market’s underlying strength is the number of trade routes that the industry’s 444 ships serve. Poten’s data shows that the number of LNG trade routes increased from nine in 1995 to 232 in 2015. This translates into compound annual growth of 18 per cent.
Reviewing the project startups planned for 2017 and beyond suggests that the pace of expansion is unlikely to slow.
As we look forward with anticipation to the year ahead, LNG World Shipping extends best wishes of the holiday season to all our readers.
Looking forward: 2017 in figures
300mt projected global LNG trade
11% growth in shipped volumes
5 new liquefaction projects
7 FSRU start-ups
2 FLNG start-ups
33 LNGC deliveries
Oil and gas giant Royal Dutch Shell is expected to build a 17 kilometre (10.6 mile) pipeline from Venezuela's shallow-water Dragon gas field to its Hibiscus platform off the north coast of Trinidad, following agreements signed Wednesday in Caracas, according to Venezuelan government statements.
Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister Stuart Young is expected to make the announcement today at the weekly post-Cabinet press briefing in Port of Spain.
On Wednesday in Parliament, he said he "just came off a plane" and would make an announcement within 24 to 48 hours on what Government is doing to help the declining oil and gas sector. Hours before, he was excused from the Lower House sitting by Speaker Bridgid Annisette-George who said he was out of the country.
At a press conference in Caracas yesterday, Young said he wanted "to also welcome to the table, Shell, who have shown themselves to be a willing partner with both the Government of Venezuela as well as the Government of Trinidad and Tobago, and to emphasise and to concur with my fellow minister, his excellency (Venezuela's Oil) Minister (Nelson) Martinez in telling Shell that we want to contract and crunch the time frame and to make this happen as quickly as possible and you have the full support of both Governments and our respective teams to make this a reality."
Venezuela's State-owned oil and gas company Petroleos de Venezuela (PdV) President Eulogio del Pino said at the press conference: "We've signed an agreement to supply gas to Trinidad through the National Gas Company of T&T (NGC) and Shell, and also to build a gas pipeline between Venezuela and Trinidad."
NGC Chairman Gerry Brooks signed on behalf of NGC while del Pino signed on behalf of PdV and Port of Spain-based Luis Prado, on behalf of Shell. NGC President Mark Loquan was also on the one-day trip to La Campina, Caracas. Young signed on behalf of the Government of T&T while Martinez signed on behalf of the Government of Venezuela. The agreements were not shared with the media. However, Young was quoted in one of the Venezuelan Government's statements as saying the development of the project could entail an investment of more than US$100 million.
The agreements cover "the construction, operation and maintenance of a gas pipeline from Dragon field, located in the north-east of the Paria Peninsula, Sucre State, to Trinidad's Hibiscus platform," a Venezuelan Government statement said.
"After this pipeline is completed, natural gas will be supplied to the Trinidadian domestic market and to a gas plant on the island, from where it is expected to be sold to the international market," the Bolivarian Government said.
"The initial idea is to start producing for Trinidad and Tobago, between two to three years, some 200 or 300 million (standard) cubic feet of gas (per day)," (mmscfd) Martinez said at the press conference at PdV headquarters in Caracas. Martinez said the gas to be exported to T&T "has the potential to be transformed into liquefied natural gas (LNG) or any kind of raw material," suggesting both Atlantic, majority-owned by Shell, and Point Lisas could benefit.
Enough to supply T&T plus export
"The Dragon field is the closest to Trinidad and has a very interesting perspective, since it can generate gas for the domestic market and for export. Gas exports are of particular interest," Martinez said. He said Venezuela has the gas potential - around 197.1 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of proven natural gas reserves - to fully satisfy T&T's domestic market and still have leftover to export.
From Wednesday, a team of experts from Shell, PdV and the NGC will work together to define the operational, commercial and legal parameters that will govern the project, Martinez said.
"We already have the infrastructure on the Trinidad side and we have the willingness to accept this challenge. The benefit for the two countries is very clear," he said.
The Dragon field is one of the four fields that make up the 14.7 tcf Mariscal Sucre Project (MSP) to the north of the Paria Peninsula, which aims to produce in the long term, 1.2 billion cubic feet (bcf) of gas and up to 28 thousand barrels of oil per day. Other fields in the MSP are the Patao, Mejillones and Rio Caribe fields.
Above: Qatari LNG Bound for the United Kingdom.
Left - Right: The Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Dr. Keith Christopher Rowley, MP with the President of The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela Honourable Nicholas Maduro during a cultural display at the Presidential Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, on following the signing of a bilateral agreement.
Venezuela, Trinidad and Tobago sign gas supply deal
December 5, 2016: President Nicholas Maduro will sign an agreement with neighboring Trinidad and Tobago to supply the Caribbean twin-island nation with as much as 500 MMcfd of natural gas from its fields in the Mariscal Sucre region.
Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Keith Rowley said he will be traveling to Caracas to sign the agreement saying it was important to the island’s continued presence as a powerhouse in the methanol and ammonia global markets.
“Some of the plants on the Point Lisas industrial estate have been operating at between 20-30% below capacity and they need to operate above 90% to be profitable…. Therefore we need to ensure that they have the natural gas necessary.”
Trinidad and Tobago is the largest exporter of methanol in the world as well as the largest exporter of ammonia to the US. It is also the sixth-largest global exporter of LNG. However, it has over the last 4 years been plagued by gas curtailments because of the slow production of reserves.
OGJ has learned that the start of gas production from Dragon field will only allow for 100 MMscfd to be supplied to Trinidad and Tobago because Venezuela needs the additional gas for electric power generation.
The agreement, however, calls for gas from Patao, Mejillones, and Rio Caribe fields when they are developed. The Mariscal Sucre project includes four gas fields: Dragon, Patao, Mejillones, and Rio Caribe. The Mariscal Sucre Dragon field is about 25 miles north of the Paria peninsula, Sucre state, in 328-427 ft of water.
The agreement, sources say, will lead to a joint pipeline project between Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA) and Trinidad and Tobago’s National Gas Co. (NGC). There is no final decision of the route, but it is going to either go to the north of Trinidad and tie into Royal Dutch Shell PLC’s Hibiscus platform in the North Coast Marine Area or through the south to NGC’s pipelines at the Point Lisas Estate.
This agreement is separate from the cross-border agreement the two countries have to develop the 10-tcf Loran Manatee gas field, which they share.
Loran Manatee field is expected to start gas flow in 2022. Most of that gas will be sent to Trinidad and Tobago to be produced. OGJ has been told that while the governments of Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela are pushing for the first by 2020, negotiators from Shell and PDVSA have said it is unlikely to occur.
Gas not for export
Multiple sources also tell OGJ that there is almost certainty that when the gas comes it will go to fueling domestic users and not go to LNG export.
One source told OGJ, “While LNG is certainly an option, thus far LNG has not been a real discussion point. What I will say is that the companies have said they want to sell the gas to the market that they will get the best return on their investment and when you look at the reality often that is the local market and furthermore, the cost of further LNG expansion may negate against it.”
A development plan for the production of gas from the Loran-Manatee also is expected to be presented to the governments of Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago by the second quarter of 2017.
Shell and PDVSA have been working with the teams from the two countries to ensure that when they produce the joint development plan, it is closely aligned with the thinking and goals of the two governments. However even when the development plan is presented, there will still be gaps until the front-end engineering and design study is conducted.
Recently teams from the companies and the two governments met for 3 days in Port of Spain negotiating a number of agreements.
OGJ has been told that the unitization and unit operating agreement (UUOA) has been completed and the Venezuelans are now awaiting a response from Trinidad and Tobago. The island nation is likely to respond by the end of the month after receiving comments from the lawyers at the Office of the Attorney General and the technocrats at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
It is likely both countries will sign off on the UUOA by first-quarter 2017 and once the UUOA is complete it automatically triggers a 90-day limit at which time they will have to put forward a development plan for the two fields.
Negotiations between Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago have continued for the last 13 years starting in 2003 with the signing of a memorandum followed by 5 years of technical studies of several reservoirs to determine if they crossed and to what extent they crossed the border.
A framework treaty was then signed and a unit operator selected. The consortium is now working on a UUOA after which a development plan will follow and after then approvals will have to be sought and the financials determined.
China, the world’s largest energy consumer, is reportedly set to import record levels of liquefied natural gas (LNG) this month.
Above: Computer rendering of the Topside of bpTT's Juniper Platform by Technip USA (EPC Contractor).
Above: The 173,000 cubic meter ship was handed over to its owner, Teekay LNG Partners, from South Korean shipbuilder Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) in August 2016.
chaguaramas, trinidad & tobago, west-indies.
Above: LNG can be stored in a volume 600 times smaller, but the gas must be stored at −260 °F (−162 °C).
Above: Gorgon LNG is being constructed on Barrow Island, Austrailia. Although a Class A Nature Reserve, it is recognised internationally as a location where industry and the environment co-exist.
Dragon Gas Field located in Territorial Waters in Venezuela.