Viva Moves Ahead With Oz Import Terminal Plans
Sydney-listed fuel supplier Viva Energy has signed memoranda of understanding (MoUs) with two consortia on developing its planned LNG import terminal at Geelong in the state of Victoria, it said on December 7.
The company signed the MoUs with a partnership between Engie Australia & New Zealand and Mitsui & Co. and a joint venture between Vitol and VTTI. The partners will potentially work with Viva in designing and developing the terminal.
“In addition to potentially providing substantial future demand for the gas processed through the facility, the partners bring significant international operational and project expertise in similar LNG regasification terminals, and commercial experience in the Australian gas and electricity markets,” Viva said.
The hope is that the MoUs will lead to binding agreements on capacity commitments, ownership and offtake arrangements, prior to a final investment decision being taken.
The terminal will serve as part of the broader Geelong energy hub in Corio, which also comprises an oil refinery operated by Viva. The company first announced plans to establish an LNG import terminal in June. According to Viva, the project will make use of existing port and energy infrastructure, including access to Victoria's gas transmission network, making it significantly more competitive than rival proposals.
Viva said the terminal would have access to both international and domestic sources of LNG supply, forming a “virtual pipeline” for domestic gas into Victoria.
Viva has approved funding for its front-end engineering and design (Feed) stage, and has filed an environmental effects statement with the department of environment, land, water and planning. It has also started the tender process for the charter of a floating storage regasification unit.
“Accordingly, the technical design phase of the project has commenced and will progress through 2021, in parallel with the regulatory approvals process," it said. "On the current scheduled timeframe, a final investment decision could be taken by mid-2022, with gas supply in 2024, in order to service the expected gas supply shortfall in the Victorian market."
Another Australian company, AGL, has also proposed to build an LNG import terminal in Victoria but the project is facing delays. US major ExxonMobil was also in the race but shelved its plans late last year.