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    Panama Receives First LNG Cargo

Summary

Panama's Costa Norte LNG has received a commissioning cargo - the first LNG to be delivered to, rather than transited across, the small Central American state.

by: Mark Smedley

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Natural Gas & LNG News, Americas, Gas to Power, Infrastructure, Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), News By Country, France, United States, Latin America

Panama Receives First LNG Cargo

Panama’s first LNG receiving terminal, Costa Norte LNG, has received a commissioning cargo – the first LNG to be delivered to, rather than transited across, the central American state.

French-flagged LNG carrier Provalys berthed June 14 at Costa Norte’s jetty – at Colon on the Caribbean side of the Panama Canal – with a cargo supplied by Engie, AES tweeted from Panama. It loaded at Cheniere’s Sabine Pass in the US, according to local newspaper El Capital Financiero.

Provalys, which can hold 153,000 m3 LNG, will remain berthed for a maximum of 45 days to provide gas to a nearby power plant now being tested, said AES.

US power group AES and Panamanian private investment fund Inversiones Bahia are 50-50% partners in the 1.5mn mt/yr LNG terminal project, being built alongside the 380 MW 'AES Colon' gas-fired power plant (CCGT). Both were scheduled to open 2018 at a combined cost of about $1bn.

In August 2017 however, Bahia said that project start-up had slipped from 2018 to 2019. AES said the same month that Costa Norte’s “regasification and LNG storage tank [were] expected online 2019.”

Since then, however, the project may have got back on schedule. Engie and AES had yet to respond to NGW queries about this and related matters at going to press.

French utility Engie has a contract to supply up to 0.4mn mt/yr LNG there, under a supply deal inked in 2016. Much of that volume, however, is expected to come from the Cameron LNG export terminal in the US which is not expected to be operational until 2019, despite its original 2018 target launch. The banner photo shows Provalys berthed at the Costa Norte terminal in Panama (Photo credit: AES/Twitter)