New Fortress Energy postponed the commercial start of Mexico’s first LNG plant

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ALTAMIRA, TAMAULIPAS.- U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) developer New Fortress Energy has postponed the commercial start of Mexico’s first LNG plant to December, company officials said on Wednesday, following delays in receiving the infrastructure.

The company previously had planned to begin commercial operations in September at the 1.4-million-tonnes-per-annum (MTPA) floating LNG plant located off the coast of Altamira, Mexico, with the first cargo departing for exports in October.

New Fortress, which made the announcement in its third-quarter earnings release, said gas for the first train will come from the Sur de Texas-Tuxpan pipeline from Texas.

“In 31 months, we’re proud to announce that we have gas into the system and expect to conclude commissioning by the end of the year,” said New Fortress’ Chief Financial Officer Christopher Guinta, referring to the time it took to complete Altamira’s first train.

The company, which has said the first train for the Fast LNG (FLNG) project in Altamira would cost about $1 billion, did not provide a timeline for its proposed trains 2-5. But on Wednesday it said is considering whether to deploy a portion of infrastructure for some of Altamira’s future trains onshore, which would require separate permits from the U.S. Department of Energy.

Trains 2 and 3 in Altamira were expected to cost about $900 million each, according to estimates previously released by the firm.

New Fortress had said that one of the company’s other remaining LNG trains would be linked to the Lakach gas field it was planning to develop with state company Pemex in Mexico.

However, Pemex and New Fortress recently terminated the Lakach deal, Reuters reported on Tuesday.

New Fortress’ executives did not specifically refer to Lakach during their presentation, but said that from a capital investment perspective, the firm is currently “very focused on FLNG 1 and FLNG 2” in Mexico and has “no plans other than that.”

In addition to New Fortress’ Altamira export plant, U.S. energy company Sempra Energy and partners are building the 3.3-MTPA Costa Azul LNG export plant in Mexico. The roughly $2 billion project is expected to produce the first LNG in mid-2025.

Several other companies are also developing LNG export plants in Mexico but no other developers have made a final investment decision to build their projects yet.

Source: El Financiero

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