Lithuania’s KN says to buy FSRU from Hoegh after current charter expires

Lithuania’s Klaipedos Nafta, the state-owned operator of the country’s first LNG import facility, said it has decided to buy Hoegh LNG’s FSRU Independence at the end of its current lease deal.

The firm said in a statement on Thursday it would buy the FSRU for $153.5 million, excluding VAT.

KN is leasing the 170,000-cbm FSRU from Hoegh LNG under a ten-year deal that expires in 2024.

Last year, KN launched a tender seeking to buy an FSRU in order to secure the long-term operation of the LNG facility until December 31, 2044.

Following the international procurement procedure and a market research initiated by KN, the firm decided that the “currently leased FSRU is the most economically advantageous option,” it said.

KN needs first to get approval from the company’s shareholders at a meeting scheduled on February 25. The company’s largest shareholder is the government of Lithuania with a 72.5 percent stake, followed by Achema with a 10.4 percent stake.

Following the approval, KN would inform Hoegh LNG of its decision to exercise the option to redeem the FSRU Independence within the timeframe set out in the lease agreement, with a set deadline in December 2022, it said.

Also, KN added it would conclude the purchase contract by December 6, 2024.

Hoegh took delivery of this FSRU from South Korea’s Hyundai Heavy Industries in May 2014, while the 290 meters long ship arrived in Klaipeda in October the same year.

In September last year, KN said the vessel had completed its 250th STS LNG operation.

The Independence FSRU received shipments from all over the world, including Norway, Egypt, Trinidad & Tobago, the US, Russia, and Nigeria.

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