BG Group to order LNG pair
British energy company BG Group will order two liquefied natural gas carriers from a Chinese shipyard after signing long term contracts to ship LNG from Australia to China.
The ships will need to be delivered by 2014 when BG expects to commence exports from the proposed Queensland Curtis LNG plant, near the port of Gladstone.
BG secured the deal to supply 3.6m tonnes per annum of LNG to China National Offshore Oil Corp for 20 years after agreeing to order two new gas carriers from Chinese yards.
CNOOC will take a 10% stake in the project and the gas carrier newbuildings, while BG can supply the Chinese energy company with LNG from other sources through this deal.
The London-listed company said it has secured long term gas shipment agreements for up to 8.3m tonnes per annum of LNG exports from the Queensland Curtis project.
On top of the Chinese deal, BG will ship 3m tpa to Singapore and 1.7m tpa will be transported across the Pacific to Chile on vessels that BG has not yet nominated.
Chinese shipyards are set to receive the first new LNG orders since mid-2008 as oil companies have renewed interest on building new export projects.
Earlier this month, Mitsui OSK Lines said it would order up to four LNG carriers from Chinese yards for delivery in 2014 and 2016 to transport gas for US oil major ExxonMobil"s projects in Papua New Guinea and Western Australia.
Only Shanghai-based Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding has built LNG carriers, but other Chinese shipyards have developed the technology.
LNG carrier newbuilding prices have fallen 18% since BG ordered its last new ships in May 2008 to around $205m, according to French shipbroker Barry Rogliano Salles.