Sinopec says receives first Qatari LNG shipment under new long-term deal

China’s state-controlled energy giant Sinopec said it has received the first LNG shipment from Qatar as part of its long-term deal with QatarEnergy.

Sinopec said in a statement on Monday that the first shipment of 94,000 tons of LNG arrived at its import terminal in the northern port city of Tianjin, near Beijing, on January 15.

The cargo arrived during the peak winter demand and also ahead of the Beijing Winter Olympics that will take place in February.

Sinopec did not reveal the name of the LNG carrier that brought the shipment, but local media reported it was the 216,200-cbm Q-Flex LNG carrier Al Sahla.

According to its AIS data provided by VesselsValue, the 315 meters long vessel, owned by Nakilat and NYK and chartered by Qatargas, has already left the Tianjin LNG facility.

It delivered the cargo from Ras Laffan as part of the 10-year LNG supply deal Sinopec and QatarEnergy, previously Qatar Petroleum, had signed in March last year.

Under the SPA, QatarEnergy will supply 2 million tons per year of LNG to Sinopec’s terminals in China.

Demand on the rise

This deal represents Sinopec’s first long-term SPA with Qatar as the firm continues to work on boosting its regasification capacity.

The company recently launched the second jetty at its LNG import in Tianjin. The new jetty is a part of the second expansion phase at the terminal, boosting the plant’s capacity from 6 to 10.8 mtpa.

In addition to this development, Sinopec received approval for the third expansion phase which would boost the plant’s capacity to 11.65 mtpa.

Besides this facility, Sinopec owns the Qingdao LNG import terminal in Shandong province and has also started building the Longkou facility.

Last month, Sinopec said it would unload more than 20 million tonnes of LNG at its terminals during 2021, an increase of 19.7 percent when compared to 2020.

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