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Sakhalin-2 will import another LNG cargo this year

The Gazprom-led Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project will import a second liquified natural gas (LNG) cargo from Alaska later this year, company chairman Ian Craig said on Tuesday. The cargo will shorten the commissioning period for the project's huge LNG plant, which is to be completed in the second half of next year.

"We will import a second cargo from Alaska later this year with the support of our customers, Tokyo Electric and Tokyo Gas. It will top up our LNG storage," Craig told the 11th annual oil and gas conference at Russia's Pacific island of Sakhalin.

Sakhalin-2's first LNG cargo was imported from Indonesia in early July and was used to test the facility before the pipeline and gas wells were complete.

The expected capacity of the plant is 9.6 million tonnes of LNG per year, which could be increased in the future.

JOINT VENTURE

Craig also said that the company is planning a joint venture later this month with Sovkomflot, Russia's largest shipping company, to operate the new port of Prigorodnoye in the Okhotsk Sea which will specialise in oil and LNG exports.

"At peak, the port will serve approximately 160 LNG carriers and 100 Aframax oil tankers each year, which is approaching one ship per day," Craig said.

The companies are likely to have equal shares in the joint venture, although giving the regional government a 20 percent stake is also under discussion, Andrei Aprelenko, general director of Sovkomflot unit Rosnefteflot, told reporters.

Russian gas export monopoly Gazprom bought a 50 percent share in Sakhalin-2 from Royal Dutch Shell and its Japanese partners last year after state environmental pressure and threats of licence withdrawal.

Craig said that over the next year Gazprom would continue replacing Shell-nominated senior officials with its representatives to bring their share to 50 percent.

Deputy CEO Andrei Galayev was appointed by Gazprom two weeks ago. Craig will step down when the project comes on stream next year.

© Reuters

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