Nakilat mulls expansion of LPG fleet
Doha, December 16, 2010
Qatar Gas Transport Company (Nakilat) may expand its fleet of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) ships as it increases transportation of the product.
'Quite a bit of the LPG we are now selling on an FOB (free on board) basis, where (customers) buy it and provide the transportation themselves,' Nakilat managing director Muhammad Ghannam was quoted as saying in our sister publication, the Gulf Daily News.
'In future we might try to change the arrangement to providing transport of LPG, which means we would increase our fleet eventually,' he said.
'We are getting a good price now when we sell LPG on an FOB basis to buyers who have the shipping capacity.'
The company, which currently has four LPG vessels in addition to its 54 liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers, ships Qatar's LNG to overseas markets. It is the world's largest shipper of LNG.
As Qatar reaches its goal of being able to export 77 million tonnes of LNG this year, it may look to increase its production of associated products, including LPG and sulphur.
Therefore Nakilat may also widen the offering of products it ships, Ghannam said.
'Our mandate is to do everything we can, as long as it makes economic sense and gives us good return for our investors. We would look at transporting anything Qatar can produce,' he said.
Strategic decisions taken by the Gulf state, such as extending the moratorium on further development of its North Field, currently in place until 2014, would not heavily affect the company, he said.
'We are linked very closely to the LNG business in Qatar. If they decide to lift the moratorium, our LNG business, as well as LPG, sulphur and all the byproducts would of course increase. But we are quite dependent as it is on (Qatari LNG producers) Qatargas and Rasgas.'
Nakilat carries LNG to countries as far afield as China, Spain and the US. – TradeArabia News Service