Singapore Calls for Feasibility Study on LNG Solutions


The country’s Energy Market Authority (EMA) has called a tender to undertake a feasibility study on potentially up to two FSRU units.


Singapore plans to meet their country’s energy needs by deploying its first two floating liquefied natural gas (LNG) units in the years to come.

A floating storage and regasification unit stores or converts LNG back into gas before transferring it onshore via a pipeline.  It is typically cheaper and quicker to build than a land-based LNG-receiving terminal.

The Energy Market Authority has already located two sites where floating storage and regasification complexes or other equivalents could be berthed.

Are the sites suitable?

To know whether the selected sites are suitable, a feasibility study will be conducted.  Earlier this month, a tender document on government e-procurement portal GeBiz calls for consultants to undertake the assessment.

The tender:

  • The tender documents say that – the floating solutions are to be used either as permanent infrastructure to meet Singapore’s growing gas demand or as a “quick-to-deploy” option that can be activated at short notice to increase the country’s LNG import capability.
  • The consultant should also come up with assessment criteria that would allow it to determine if more sites can be studied and used to deploy similar floating solutions.  This indicates that the authority is open to housing such facilities at more than two sites.
  • The tender will close on May 27.

Will this floating LNG benefit the country?

Industry players agreed that such floating solutions would play a key role in helping Singapore beef up its energy security, even as today’s gas demand is growing at a slower pace than expected.  Most of Singapore’s gas supply – which powers about 95 per cent of the country’s electricity – comes from Malaysia and Indonesia via offshore pipelines as well as from the Jurong Island LNG terminal.

An EMA spokesman told in a separate statement that Singapore’s gas demand could expand by 6.9 million tonnes annually by 2025, up from the current 10 million tonnes, largely on the back of growth in the power generation as well as petrochemical and refinery industries.  “As part of our infrastructure planning, EMA is studying various options to meet our long-term gas demand and to enhance energy security,” he said.  “We will better be able to assess our options upon conclusion of this high-level feasibility study.”

Ms Michelle Neo, senior analyst for gas at energy consulting firm FGE, said the existing supply contracts for piped gas from Malaysia are expected to expire in 2019, and in 2013 in the case of Indonesia.

Ms Alexis Aik, the firm’s managing director of global gas/LNG, believes the floating solutions could be deployed in the western or eastern areas of the island – such as Jurong Island or Changi – which are heavily populated by industrials.  Also, she added that such facilities would also allow Singapore to get around the issue of space constraints, leaving land to be put aside for industrial or commercial purposes instead.

Galway Group president Karthik Sathyamoorthy said the floating solutions would also be a huge boost to Singapore’s aspiration to become Asia’s LNG trading hub and as it readies for LNG bunkering.

“For this hub status to really take off, you’ll need terminal capacity, and the next step is (to invest in) infrastructure,” he said.

Image Credit: BW Maritime

Source: The Straits Times


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