Inpex plans LNG terminal at Japan's port of Naoetsu

Inpex Holdings Inc. plans construction of an LNG import terminal at the port of Naoetsu in Joetsu, on the Sea of Japan.

Aug 17th, 2007

Eric Watkins
Senior Correspondent

LOS ANGELES, Aug 17 -- Inpex Holdings Inc. plans construction of an LNG import terminal at the port of Naoetsu in Joetsu, on the Sea of Japan.

The Joetsu facilities, which will house two 180,000-kl storage tanks and a pier for LNG tankers, is planned for completion by 2013. It initially will handle 300,000-400,000 tonnes/year of LNG, rising to about 2 million tpy, or 3% of Japan's current LNG imports.

Supplies of LNG will come partly from Inpex's Ichthys gas project in the Maret Islands of northwestern Australia, which will produce 6 million tpy of LNG, starting in 2012. Inpex plans to mix its domestically produced gas with the imported LNG.

"We should be able to import part of the output from the Ichthys LNG project into the new terminal," Inpex Director Hisatake Matsuno told reporters. Last month, Inpex won the consent of Aboriginal landowners in Australia to proceed with the Ichthys project.

Inpex also agreed last month to negotiate with the Kimberley Land Council over the company's plans to build a $10 billion (Aus.) LNG gasification plant on the remote, uninhabited Maret Islands off northwestern Western Australia (OGJ Online, July 6, 2007).

According to Matsuno, Inpex forecasts that its gas sales in Tokyo and seven surrounding prefectures will more than double to 2.5 billion cu m/year in the next 6 years from the current 1.2 billion cu m/year.

The Japanese firm currently delivers gas from Niigata Prefecture's Minami-Nagaoka gas field through pipelines to city gas companies and manufacturers in the greater Tokyo area as well as Yamanashi, Nagano, and Niigata prefectures.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com.

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