Australian LNG import project wins approval for capacity boost

Australian Industrial Energy has secured an approval to increase capacity at its planned LNG import terminal in Port Kembla in New South Wales.

The approval to modify the facility will allow increased volumes of gas to flow through the LNG import terminal.

This will satisfy the market need for more gas during winter months, Australian Industrial Energy said on Monday.

The New South Wales government granted the modification approval.

With the additional capacity now approved, AIE said it will continue working with government agencies to complete post-consent requirements.

The company will also continue working with customers to firm up supply contracts.

“With firm supply contracts in place, AIE will be able to take its final investment decision and commence the relatively short and simple 14 –16 months construction program for the terminal,” it said.

AIE is a consortium consisting of Australian businessman Andrew Forrest’s Squadron Energy, Japanese trading house Marubeni and LNG trading giant JERA.

The Port Kembla facility is one of the proposed LNG import projects aiming to bring natural gas to southeast Australia to fill in the looming shortage.

AIE previously appointed construction contractor, Spiecapag Soletanche Bachy. It also secured the Hoegh Galleon as the floating storage and regasification unit for the project.

AIE says if it reaches a final investment decision this year it could start importing LNG by 2022. This is nearly two years later than first hoped.

The Port Kembla terminal will have the capacity to deliver over 100 petajoules of natural gas each year.

This represents about 75 percent of NSW total market needs, according to AIE.

It could source LNG supplies from Western Australia, Queensland or anywhere else in the world.

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