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Thursday, April 02, 2009

Gazprom eyes more focus on LNG

04-01-2009 - BarentsObserver - Russian energy major Gazprom will seek to enhance the role of LNG in a bid to diversify export routes, company leader Aleksey Miller said Wednesday. That could imply a bigger role of LNG also in projects like the Shtokman field. In a board meeting today, Mr. Miller highlighted the development of LNG as a way to circumvent troubled transit routes. -In a time of enhanced globalization processes in the LNG market, we see that there is a need for a new review of the [company’s] strategy in the field of LNG as transit risks rise considerably and risky documents which ignore Russian interest are signed […], Miller said, a press release from Gazprom reads. He also called for the analysis of possible new LNG projects. Gazprom is heavily dependent of its pipeline grid for the export of gas. That pipeline export, however, is under increasing political pressure following the disputes with the Ukraine. Also new projects like the Nord Stream pipeline, which is projected to export also gas from the Shtokman field in the Barents Sea, could be in jeopardy as countries like Sweden refuse to approve the project. LNG will be one of the ways Russia and Gazprom can decrease its dependence of the troubled transit areas. The company recently started the production of its first ever LNG in the Sakhalin-II project. Other project are in the pipeline, among them the Shtokman field, which will is projected to produce about half of all the 3,8 trillon gas reserves as LNG. Gazprom has earlier also considered the construction of LNG facilities for its fields in the Yamal Peninsula. Possibly, Gazprom might now seek to increase LNG production in the Shtokman field and reassess opportunities in Yamal. In the former project, production is projected to start in 2014.

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