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Sabine Pass LNG exports set record in February

19 Apr 2017, 9.38 pm GMT

Sabine Pass LNG exports set record in February

Houston, 19 April (Argus) — Louisiana's Sabine Pass LNG terminal in February exported 15 cargoes with a combined volume equivalent to 51.98 Bcf (1.47bn m³) of gas, according to data recently released by the US Department of Energy (DOE).

That set a monthly US LNG export record as production at the facility continued to ramp up, topping the previous record of 51.24 Bcf from 15 cargoes in January. Sabine Pass is the only operating major LNG export facility in the contiguous US. Other US terminals are scheduled to come on line later this year and in 2018.

Five of the February cargoes went to Asia, five to Latin America, three to Europe and two to the Middle East.

Eleven of the February cargoes were exported by Shell, Spain's Gas Natural Fenosa or Sabine Pass owner Cheniere Cheniere under long-term arrangements, according to an Argus analysis of the DOE data.

The four remaining cargoes, including three test cargoes from the third liquefaction train, were sold on a spot basis at a volume-weighted average price of $5.88/mmBtu. Argus in January assessed the US Gulf coast FOB LNG spot price for February loading at an average of $8.10/mmBtu.

Three of the spot cargoes were likely delivered by Cheniere, with two of those of those going to Manzanillo, western Mexico, and the other to Kuwait, according to a shipping source. The fourth was likely delivered by Gas Natural to Manzanillo.

Shell bought four February cargoes under a 20-year contract at $6.15/mmBtu each, although Cheniere reported FOB prices to the DOE of $3.90/mmBtu for those shipments. Cheniere did not report the liquefaction fee of $2.25/mmBtu for those volumes, as Shell has to pay it whether it takes cargoes or not. It only reported 115pc of the final Nymex Henry Hub settlement price for the January contract.

Shell delivered two of those cargoes to China, one to India and one to Jordan.

Gas Natural bought three February cargoes at $6.49/mmBtu, representing a liquefaction fee of $2.49/mmBtu plus 115pc of the Nymex gas price. The Spanish company delivered those cargoes to Turkey, China and Mexico.

The four remaining cargoes were sold at FOB prices of $6.90/mmBtu, representing liquefaction fees of $3/mmBtu and 115pc of the Nymex gas price.

Three of the cargoes were delivered by Cheniere, one each to Japan and Turkey, while the third was delivered to Spain and Portugal.

The fourth was bought by Shell and delivered to Chile. In addition to its deal at a $2.25mn/Btu liquefaction fee, Shell has 20-year contracts for Sabine Pass supplies at liquefaction fees of $3/mmBtu.

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