LNG Easy lines up fast-track LNG import project for Pakistan

Chinese major is backing deal formed with Karachi Port Trust and Pakistan Railways

By Lucy Hine

Singapore-based LNG Easy is working with a Chinese major on a quick start-up solution to ship LNG into Pakistan’s Karachi Port by the middle of next year.

Speaking to TradeWinds, LNG Easy co-founder He Yi Yong said the company and its yet unnamed partner have signed a memorandum of understanding with Karachi Port Trust and Pakistan Railways to secure a permanent berth within the port.

Under the plan, one of LNG Easy’s mobile filling platforms (MFP), similar to the unit deployed recently in Myanmar, would be moored alongside the berth.

An LNG carrier would discharge into ISO containers stored on the MFP or ashore.

He said the MFP would help fast track the project as it cuts out the need to build an LNG jetty. “We just make it simple,” he added.

The ISO containers would then be distributed to customers inland either by truck or by rail from Pakistan Railways’ port terminal.

But he said the rail company could also become a customer, as it is looking at converting its locomotives to use LNG as a fuel.

The venture would start with the aim of importing around 300,000 tonnes per annum of LNG, with a view to expanding this to 1 million tonnes per annum to 2 mtpa.

It is awaiting an LNG distribution licence, which is expected to be secured shortly.

Forget onshore terminals and FSRUs, it’s ‘retail LNG’ that counts

He said the import solution can be put together in months and, while the Covid-19 pandemic may slow progress, he expected the first offloading of LNG would be towards the end of the second quarter of 2021.

He added that the use of ISO containers and rail transport was key to the scheme due to Pakistan’s lack of gas pipeline capacity.

He said LNG Easy — which is working on LNG import licences for Vietnam and Bangladesh — will build an MFP for the Pakistan project.

Its first MFP in Myanmar will likely leave that project before the end of this year after being replaced by an LNG floating storage unit.

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