QP Books Capacity in China to Build LNGCs
Qatar Petroleum (QP) has reserved capacity at China's Hudong-Zhonghua shipyard to build LNG carriers (LNGCs) for use at its North Field East (NFE) project.
The deal, potentially worth more than riyals 11bn ($3bn), will see QP reserve a "significant" share of Hudong's LNGC construction capability through 2027, the state company said April 22.
The NFE project aims to raise Qatar's LNG production capacity to 126mn mt/yr by 2027, from 77mn mt/yr. This will enable the Gulf state to reclaim its former position as the world's top LNG exporter, after narrowly losing out to Australia last year.
QP is pushing ahead with the expansion despite the slump in gas prices over the past year, recently kicking off development drilling for the project. NFE is expected to enjoy the lowest break-even costs out of any of the new liquefaction capacity due to come on stream in the coming years. QP has said it will need to add at least 60 new LNGCs to its fleet to deliver the extra gas to customers.
NFE's first stage will add four more trains to the offshore North field, each with a capacity of over 8mn mt/yr. QP aims to take a final investment decision this year and launch first supply in 2023. The second phase, consisting of two more trains, is scheduled for start-up in 2027.