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ENERGY Caribbean Yearbook (2013-14)

Companies gasfin

Companies gasfin development sa Small LNG plant can transform TT gas exports Countries Gasfin Development SA, a Luxembourgregistered “right-sized LNG solutions” company, as it describes itself, is anxious to establish a small LNG plant in Trinidad and Tobago, and has been trying to persuade the energy ministry and its gas promotion agency, the National Gas Company (NGC), towards that end for almost four years, without success up to the time of writing. Why is Gasfin Development so keen on Project Constantine, as it has named its LNG project? Because it thinks Trinidad and Tobago, the only country capable of exporting gas in the Caribbean and Central America, should be taking advantage of the expected demand from regional power utilities for small and mediumsized (i.e. “right-sized”) cargos of LNG for fuel. The high cost of conventional fuel oil and diesel is translating into crippling electricity bills for businesses and households. There is no government intervention in fuel costs in the Caribbean except in Trinidad and Tobago itself, so local utilities have to bear the full brunt of market prices. Gasfin’s CEO Roland Fisher, who has been pressing for a 500,000-tonne-per-year single train (at first), reckons that gas would be eminently competitive at the mmbtu equivalent price of fuel oil or diesel. He has identified several markets in the Caribbean and Central America that would be willing to convert to gas if they could be assured of a regular supply that significantly reduced their energy costs. Gasfin designed and delivered the first mid-scale LNG plant and built the first mid-scale mixed-use LNG carrier The small size of these regional power utilities means that their LNG requirements would be modest, in the range of 50,000 to 100,000 tonnes a year (7 million to 14 million cubic feet of gas a day). The total gas requirement for the LNG train which Fisher wants to site at La Brea in southwest Trinidad would therefore be only 70 mmcfd, which could probably be squeezed out of NGC’s current gas contracts, which amount to about 1.7 bn cfd. Another 2.3 bn cfd is already diverted to LNG production by direct deals between gas-producing companies and Atlantic at Point Fortin. Gasfin comes with impeccable credentials as a “right-sized LNG solutions” company. It designed and delivered the first mid-scale LNG plant – 400,000 tonnes a year – to China in 2004. It built the first mid-scale mixed-use LNG carrier, the 7,500 cubic metre Coral Methane, in 2009. If floating storage and regasification units are required – which is likely to be the case with the market Gasfin wants to service in the French Caribbean departments of Martinique and Guadeloupe – then it can construct those too. The company claims its type C LNG cargo tank “is the only tank design able to withstand pressure build-up from LNG storage.” Trinidad and Tobago, through Atlantic, already services about 21 LNG markets in the world, but the unique value of the Caribbean and Central American market is its scaleddown size. A local company, in the form of NGC, can handle this in such a way that Trinidad and Tobago, as a country, is directly involved in the LNG value chain, rather than indirectly through companies such as BP, BG and Repsol. Fisher believes that La Brea LNG will bring tangible benefits to Trinidad and Tobago by positioning it as “the world pioneer of mid-scale LNG exporting” through the “capture of long-term premium markets in the Caribbean.” What’s more, with a small LNG plant up and running, LNG for the first time could be used domestically for industry and transport, even rivalling CNG as an alternative motor fuel. 40

Delivering gas to the Caribbean Right-sized LNG solutions Gasfin, building on its extensive global references in Mid-scale LNG, stands ready to assist Trinidad & Tobago to win the race to serve the Caribbean gas market. For more information visit www.gasfin.net or call +44 20 3369 9690 At every step...in every size...on land or sea...across the globe

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