Hoegh LNG Holdings said it had signed a binding 10-year time charter contract with the German government for the 170,000-cbm FSRU Hoegh Esperanza which will soon start serving the Uniper-led Wilhelmshaven facility.
The floating LNG player said in a statement on Thursday it signed the charter deal with the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action.
Hoegh said that the FSRU Hoegh Esperanza would be located in Wilhelmshaven and operated by Uniper acting as agent on behalf of the charterer.
Back in May, Hoegh LNG signed binding implementation agreements with the ministry to charter two FSRUs as the European country looks to replace Russian pipeline gas supplies.
Hoegh said at the time that the detailed FSRU contracts were scheduled to be completed by September/October.
“We are very pleased and honored to be signing the time charter contract with the Federal government of Germany, and look forward to working in close collaboration with Uniper in Wilhelmshaven,” CEO Erik Nyheim said in the statement.
Hoegh Esperanza to start work this month
Germany currently has no operational terminals but the country is expected to have at least six operational FSRUs by the end of the next year.
The government backed the charter of five FSRUs while Deutsche ReGas is developing the first private FSRU-based facility in Lubmin.
Hoegh Esperanza is heading towards Germany to start serving the Wilhelmshaven facility. The FSRU took a cargo in Spain and this would probably become the first-ever LNG shipment to Germany.
The FSRU was on Thursday located in the North Sea and it could arrive in Wilhelmshaven today, according to AIS data provided by VesselsValue.
Uniper and the German government plan to launch the Wilhelmshaven facility on Saturday.
This terminal would probably become the first-ever operational regasification facility in Germany.
German energy firm RWE is also expecting to receive the first commissioning cargo at the Elbhafen FSRU-based LNG import terminal in Brunsbuettel in January. This terminal will also feature Hoegh’s vessel, Hoegh Gannet.
Last month, Deutsche ReGas announced the arrival of the 2009-built 145,000-cbm FSRU Neptune in the Mukran Port on the island of Ruegen but the company is still awaiting to receive two approvals while bad weather could also affect the arrival of the FSRU in Lubmin.
The firm previously expected to launch this first private FSRU-based facility in Germany on December 1.
The Lubmin facility would probably become the second operational terminal, followed by the Brunsbuettel project.