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    AG&P to have more than 300 CNG stations in India by year-end: interview


The company's LNG import terminal in India is expected to be online by end-2024.

by: Shardul Sharma

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NGW Interview, Natural Gas & LNG News, Asia/Oceania, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), Security of Supply, Corporate, News By Country, India, Philippines

AG&P to have more than 300 CNG stations in India by year-end: interview

Singapore-based AG&P expects to have more than 300 compressed natural gas (CNG) stations in India by the end of 2023, Karthik Sathyamoorthy, president, AG&P LNG Terminals & Logistics, tells NGW.

“By the end of 2023, we aim to have more than 300 CNG stations and close to 4,700 km of pipeline. One of our major focus areas for 2023 is to add domestic piped natural gas (PNG) connections, with the target to achieve more than 400,000 households by the end of 2023,” Sathyamoorthy says.

AG&P City Gas, a unit of AG&P, is developing 12 city gas distribution (CGD) networks in India under the brand name AG&P Pratham. In its 12 concessions, AG&P is responsible for developing and operating CNG stations for vehicles, PNG to homes, and the distribution of LNG to industrial and commercial customers.


India LNG import terminal expected online by end-2024

AG&P is developing an LNG terminal that was supposed to come up at Karaikal in south India. The company broke ground on the 1mn metric ton/year terminal in 2020 but the work got delayed due to the outbreak of coronavirus. Now there has been a change of plan given the expansion of its CGD business and the company is looking for an alternate site.

“We are currently assessing a few project sites for our LNG terminal in India. We selected Karaikal to develop a small-scale LNG import terminal. With AG&P’s downstream CGD business in India that covers 8% of India across our 12 geographic areas, we plan to develop a 5mn mt/yr terminal that needs a change in location. We are targeting to start the terminal by end of 2024,” Sathyamoorthy says.

The India LNG terminal will supply regasified LNG (RLNG) to AG&P Pratham for industrial, transport and residential customers. The terminal will also service demand from other CGD companies as well as power plants.

Sathyamoorthy argues that the current high LNG prices are a short-term issue and India’s long-term gas demand outlook remains robust.

“The current high LNG prices are a short-term issue, and we expect the market to balance in the next 12 to 18 months. Overall, the fundamental gas demand story for India is strong and the government is on target to achieve a 15% share for natural gas in the overall energy mix,” he says.


Philippines LNG import terminal expected online in April 2023

AG&P’s first and the Philippines' maiden LNG import terminal is scheduled to be commissioned in April 2023.  The company has a long-term charter agreement with ADNOC Logistics and Services for the supply, operations and maintenance of the vessel named ISH, a 137,512 m3 floating storage unit (FSU).

The FSU is part of the combined offshore/onshore terminal that will have an initial capacity of 5mn mt/yr and provide its customers with resiliency of supply, even in storms.

“Our hybrid-designed Philippines LNG import terminal will be commissioned in two phases. The first phase will be commissioned with the FSU storage in April 2023, and the two additional onshore storage tanks will be integrated by the end of the second phase in 2024,” Sathyamoorthy says.

The terminal will service the 2.5 GW power plants of San Miguel Global Power with additional demand of about 1.8mn mt/yr from upcoming power plants in Ilijan.  In addition, AG&P plans to roll out and/or support a network of CNG stations to service transport demand as well as service demand from the industrial and domestic sector with identified partners in the country.


Gas will continue to play a pivotal role

AG&P believes that gas will play a pivotal role in the energy mix for any country going forward. “Moreover, with the increased investments towards renewable energy for power generation, it is evident that the power grid needs stability, and for that, gas is the best fuel for mid-merit and peaking demand. Hence, we will continue to see gas playing a key role in the energy markets for the next 20 to 30 years,” Sathyamoorthy says.