Yamal Ships First Contracted LNG Cargoes
Russian energy firm Novatek has shipped its first contracted cargoes of LNG from its Yamal plant in the Russian Arctic. The shipments began on April 1, according to state-owned news outlet TASS.
The first 18 commercial cargoes were sold on spot contracts and were shipped to terminals in Western Europe. In the first quarter of the year, Yamal exported about 1.25 mtpa of LNG on the spot market. Going forward, most of Yamal's cargoes will go to CNPC, TOTAL, Engie, Shell and Gazprom under long-term contracts. In all, Novatek expects to complete 75 loadings at Yamal this year, including both spot- and contracted cargoes.
Yamal LNG is served by the world's first fleet of icebreaking LNG tankers. The Arc7 ice-class vessels are capable of carrying LNG westbound to Europe year-round, and in the summer, they can transit the Northern Sea Route eastbound to Asia, shaving weeks off the travel time between the Kara Sea and core markets in China and Japan.
All cargoes to date are from Yamal's first production train. The plant's second train is due to come online later this year, and a third unit will enter service in 2019. At full capacity, Yamal will produce 16.5 mtpa of LNG, and Novatek is already working on ambitious plans to build a second plant on the other side of the Gulf of Ob.
The Vladimir Rusanov, the fifth and latest of Yamal's 15 planned icebreaking LNG carreirs (MOL)