South American LNG Import Terminal in Colombia Backed by Vopak Invites Expressions of Interest in Expansion
02.05.2023 By - NEWS

February 5, 2022 [LNG Journal] – The South American nation of Colombia is making moves to import more liquefied national gas as the floating LNG terminal at the port of Cartagena has revealed expansion plans.


The terminal is a joint venture between Colombia’s Promigas and Dutch global energy storage giant Royal Dutch Vopak and is called SPEC LNG from its formal name, Sociedad Portuaria El Cayao.

SPEC LNG said it was now inviting expressions of interest from market participants for potential regasification services.

The Colombian floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) is one of the original wave of FSRUs deployed in South America.

Cartagena is in the far northeast of the country on the Caribbean Sea and the terminal has been operational since December 2016.

SPEC LNG pointed out that the facility is Colombia’s main connection to international LNG markets and supports 2,000 megawatts of gas-fired power generation, about 60 percent of Colombia’s gas-fired electricity capacity.


Gas security move

SPEC LNG said it was taking measures to address a potential shortage of natural gas supply in Colombia.

“Expansion plans consist of increasing its regasification capacity from 400 million cubic feet per day to 450 million cubic feet per day by the end of 2023 and up to a total of 530 mmscf per day as of the second half of 2026,” explained the company.

“This market test aims to assess demand from market participants´ for the potential additional capacity ahead of a final investment decision,” added SPEC.

The aim of the expansion is to ensure both medium-term and long-term supply of natural gas in Colombia as part of its energy transition measures.

“Considering the latest natural gas supply and demand projections in Colombia, the expansion of the capacity of our LNG import terminal is an efficient and competitive option to ensure the supply of natural gas to the market,” said Jose M. Castro, Managing Director of SPEC.

“As a result, this market test will help us advance to the next stages of the project before the FID,” he stated.


Vopak LNG interests

Dutch company Vopak’s most high-profile LNG investment is its 50 percent stake in the Gate LNG terminal in Rotterdam

Its involvement with SPEC LNG is through its 49 percent shareholding in the project with 170,000 cubic metres of capacity.

It also holds 60 percent of the Mexican Altamira import terminal on the Gulf of Mexico.

Vopak’s other LNG interests include its 44 percent stake in the 150,000 cubic metres capacity Engro Elengy terminal in Pakistan.

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