NFE plans to launch Altamira LNG production in May

US LNG firm New Fortress Energy expects to start production of liquefied natural gas at its first FLNG project off Altamira, Mexico in May.

The Wes Edens-led firm said in its first-quarter results report on Wednesday that the project is in final stages of commissioning.

According to the firm, first LNG is expected later this month and first full cargo is expected in June.

NFE’s first 1.4 mtpa FLNG asset located offshore Altamira has reached mechanical completion in January this year.

The company said in its fourth-quarter report in February this year it was expecting first LNG in March and first cargo in April 2024.

NFE sent its liquefaction rig Pioneer II on September 26, 2023 to Altamira to start serving the FLNG project.

Prior to this, NFE’s utilities and accommodation rig, Pioneer III, arrived off Altamira, as well as the gas treatment rig.

The FLNG project consists of three rigs, Pioneer I, II, and III.

Besides the three rigs, the 160,000-cbm Penguin FSU serves the project as a floating storage unit.

Expected value exceeds $3 billion

Chris Guinta, NFE’s finance chief, said during the earnings call later on Wednesday that the expected value of its first FLNG unit exceeds $3 billion.

This value is driven by two components, including the cost to replicate the liquefier and time value of having production in today’s “elevated” global LNG market.

The replacement cost at $1,400 per tonne has a value of about $2 billion and value of “in the money” LNG for about four years is worth about $1 billion.

NFE expects the unit to produce a bit more than 90 LNG cargoes in the next four years.

The firm said the next step following COD is financing, and the goal is to finance the asset in secured financing.

“We are targeting $1.5 billion to $1.75 billion in proceeds which represents a low loan to value given the asset exceeds $3 billion,” Guinta said.


NFE recently said that “a minor technical issue” which took place last month on one of its rigs as part of the Altamira LNG project will not affect the launch of production.

The incident took place on Pioneer II during the commissioning of the cold box.

Guinta said during the earnings call that the “incident with a pipe fracture inside our cold box” took place last Friday, April 26.

“This was extremely unfortunate given we were expecting LNG a mere 72 hours later,” he said.

“The pipe incident caused the boxes insulation material, a non-toxic volcanic sand called perlite, to be admitted all over the rigs,” Guinta said.

“Thankfully, no significant injuries were sustained.. and no adjacent systems were damaged,” he said.

He said the damage was isolated to one pipe and manifold in the cold box, and is expected to be repaired by next weekend.


NFE reported net income of $57 million in the first quarter of 2024, down compared to $151.6 million in the same quarter last year and $214.9 million in the prior quarter.

The company’s revenue rose to $690.3 million in the first quarter of this year compared to $579.1 million in the same quarter last year but it dropped compared to $758.4 million in the previous quarter.

Also, Adjusted Ebidta of $340 million dropped compared to $440 million in the first quarter last year and from $387.6 million in the prior quarter.

NFE’s board of directors approved a dividend of $0.10 per share.

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