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Exmar wins LNG contract in Colombia

Published:Sunday | April 8, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Exmar, the Belgian firm which was the main player in the consortium initially selected to roll out Jamaica's Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) project, has secured a contract to build and operate a similar system in the region.

Pacific Stratus Energy (PSE) Colombia has contracted Exmar to build, operate, and maintain a floating liquefaction regasification and storage unit (FLRSU) for the Colombian Caribbean coast.

According to Exmar, this will be the world's first such unit, with a storage capacity of 14,000 cubic meters of LNG.

"We are proud to assist PRE (Pacific Rubiales Energy, the parent company of PSE), in reducing the carbon footprint of Central America and the Caribbean," said Nicolas Saverys, CEO of Exmar.

"This FLRSU will be the world's first operational floating LNG production unit. The unique technology on board the unit is the result of Exmar's innovative leadership in the LNG industry during the past years," added Saverys.

Under the agreement with PSE, Exmar will supply and liquefy millions of metric tons of LNG over a 15-year period, under a tolling structure.

PSE will provide the gas via a planned, new 88-km pipeline from its producing La Creciente gas field to the Caribbean coast.

The LNG will be targeted initially at markets in Central America and the Caribbean, to replace fuel oil and diesel, currently used for power generation.

The project should also put in place incentives to explore and develop undiscovered Colombian natural gas resources.

Ronald Pantin, Chief Executive Officer of PRE commented: "We are very excited with this Agreement, as it opens new markets and fast-tracks monetisation of the PRE's extensive natural gas reserves."

According to Pantin, "This leverages PRE's strategy to explore and develop its large gas resources in northern Colombia, and also reinforces our view that Colombia has enough gas resources to become a reliable LNG supplier for the region."

The Exmar Consortium was selected the preferred bidder to introduce LNG to Jamaica but that was scrapped last year after the Contractor General raised several concerns about the bidding process.

Since then, the government has reopened the bidding process but is yet to select a preferred bidder.