First US shale gas reaches India; GAIL’s Dabhol terminal receives cargo

India’s first liquefied natural gas cargo from the United States landed at the Dabhol regasification terminal in Maharashtra

Receiving the first-ever shipment of 1.2 lakh tonne LNG under the long-term contract of 20 years, oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan also announced Rs 700-crore investment by the newly-created Gail arm Konkan LNG to complete an under-construction breakwater facility, that on completion will make the terminal an all-weather facility.

Gail will be getting 22-24 shipments per annum till the breakwater is built. Once that is done we will be handling 80-90 ships a year.

GAIL was an early mover to contract for LNG from America. It will get around 90 cargoes annually from the Sabine Pass and Cove Point terminals. It had signed a sale and purchase agreement with Cheniere Energy in December 2011; the latter will sell about 3.5 million tonnes of LNG a year to GAIL.

This is part of a 32-billion US Dollars supply deal for 20 years that GAIL signed with the Dominion Energy Cove Point project in Maryland and Cheniere Energy Inc’s Sabine Pass Project in Louisiana.

GAIL’s first charter-hired vessel, MV Meridian Spirit, arrived after a 25-day voyage and docked for unloading in the presence of petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan, Gail chief B C Tripathi and US diplomatic officials.

Receiving the first-ever shipment of 1.2 lakh tonne LNG under the long-term contract of 20 years, oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan also announced Rs 700-crore investment by the newly-created Gail arm Konkan LNG to complete an under-construction breakwater facility, that on completion will make the terminal an all-weather facility.

Currently due to lack of the breakwater the Dabhol terminal, created in FY07 by the original Dabhol power plant promoter Enron Corporation which went bankrupt and abandoned the 1,200-MW power plant, can operate only eight months.

Gail signed two, 20-year LNG supply agreements potentially worth $32 billion for LNG exports from the Dominion Cove Point project in Maryland and the Sabine Pass project in Louisiana in 2011 and 2013 respectively, US Consulate, Mumbai said in a statement.

Indo-US trade has been rising 11.4 percent on average since 2000 when it was $20 billion to over $126.1 billion in 2017.

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