Nigeria LNG sells first spot cargo to US

ABUJA�CMS Energy Corp., Dearborn, Mich., has purchased a spot cargo of liquefied natural gas from the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Co. The cargo was lifted by the vessel LNG Delta May 25 and is scheduled to arrive at CMS Energy's Lake Charles, La., receiving terminal June 11.

"This is a major milestone for NLNG, in that it represents the first spot cargo from our facilities at Bonny Island," Managing Director Andrew Jamieson said in a statement. He noted it is also the first sale of gas to the US by NLNG.

"This shows our determination to expand into new markets and optimize the use of our assets to the best interest of our shareholders," he said. "We expect such trade to be a permanent part of our business in the future, and we look at the US market as a very interesting outlet for our LNG, both for spot and long-term sales."

The company's first consignment sailed from Nigeria in October 1999. NLNG has long-term sales contracts with Italy's ENEL SPA, Spain's Enagas SA, Turkey's Botas, France's Gaz de France, and Portugal's Transgas. About 5.78 million tonnes/year of LNG are expected to be delivered to these buyers.

Meanwhile, NLNG has signed an accord at Port Harcourt, Rivers state, in the southeast part of the country with its host community, Bonny kingdom, whereby the company the community will fulfil their mutual obligations to each other so that NLNG can carry out its operations in a conducive environment.

Jamieson said in a statement:

"The agreement is the climax of negotiations that began in September 1999, after protests by the community," he said. The company said that, in order to help end restiveness in the Bonny community, State Gov. Peter Odili has set up a panel under the chairmanship of his deputy, Gabriel Toby, to meet with Bonny kingdom representatives and NLNG to reconcile their differences and ensure that a long lasting relationship is established between the parties.

The company agreed to improve its employment records among residents of the community and to provide community support through the provision of water transport, health centers, and roads, according to the statement.

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