PTT to buy LNG from Petronas

Construction News

PTT PLC will import about one million tonnes per year of liquefied natural gas from Malaysia’s oil and gas company Petronas to prepare for the expected rise in future demand and strengthen Thailand’s energy stability.

“PTT recently signed an MoU (memorandum of understanding) with Petronas for the import of LNG at one million tonnes per year. It’s the head of the agreement. Now, details will be discussed,” PTT chairman Piyasvasti Amranand said yesterday.

When the deal is completed, it will be forwarded to the National Energy Policy Council.

The long-term contract should contribute 60-70 per cent of LNG imports. The rest would be purchased on the spot market, he said.

PTT is buying two million tonnes of LNG per year from Qatar. Recently, the council approved a draft long-term LNG purchase agreement with Shell Eastern Trading and BP Singapore for one million tonnes per year per company.

PTT is proceeding with Phase 2 of its LNG Receiving Terminal Project in an area close to the first phase in Rayong’s Map Ta Phut industrial zone.

It will increase annual LNG production capacity by 2017 to 10 million tonnes, equivalent to 1.4 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas, from five million tonnes per year currently, equivalent to 700 million cubic feet per day of natural gas.

PTT also plan to build Phase 3 for five more million tonnes of LNG per year, while the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand is interested in LNG terminal construction for its power plants.

“Having one more LNG operator is not necessary as that could erode the LNG system and planning stability. The key point is to have sufficient LNG to meet users’ demand,” Piyasvasti said.

To increase competition, third-party access to the natural gas transmission system and LNG stations may be permitted.

The government should come up with a clear conclusion on the future of the Erawan and Bongkot petroleum fields, whose concessions expire in 2022 and 2023.

If there are no certain results, the concession holders could scale back production, which could increase the need for more imported LNG in the future |and raise electricity rates, he added.