Excelerate Energy, Inc. (NYSE: EE) announced on Wednesday that its floating storage and regasification unit ("FSRU"), the Exemplar, has anchored at Finland’s port of Inkoo, heralding a major move in the country’s goals to reduce independence on Russian natural gas.
The FSRU Exemplar measures 291 meters long and 43 meters wide with a storage capacity of 150,900 m3 of LNG. The floating platform can process more than 5 billion cubic meters per year (bcm/y) of regasification capacity.
"The arrival of the FSRU Exemplar at the port of Inkoo represents an important milestone for Finland as it prepares to enhance its energy security and bring essential energy infrastructure to the region," Steven Kobos, President and CEO of Excelerate, has said.
Demand for LNG floating storage and regasification units (LNG-FSRUs) has increased sharply this year, with Europe facing an energy supply squeeze as Russia has progressively cut pipeline gas flows. Accelerate plans to send three FSRUs to Europe with combined throughput capacity to import 15 billion cubic meters of gas, or about 10% of the pipeline and LNG imports from Russia in 2021. Demand for the terminals in Europe is so strong that it could make it less affordable for emerging nations to use FSRUs for their own needs
Demand for LNG imports has intensified after the ruptures on the key Nord Stream pipeline system quashed any prospect of Russia turning its gas taps back on. This has forced dozens of countries in Europe to turn to FSRUs or floating LNG terminals, which are essentially mobile terminals that unload the super-chilled fuel and pipe it into onshore networks.
Currently, there are 48 FSRUs in operation globally, with Rystad Energy revealing that all but six of them are locked into term charters.
According to energy think-tank Ember, the EU has lined up plans for as many as 19 new FSRU projects at an estimated cost of €9.5bn.
The biggest beneficiaries are Korean shipbuilding, for whom FSRUs are a major revenue-generator. Korea is the definitive world leader in this field. According to local media, Korean shipbuilders managed to book 46% more orders so far, YoY. And the government’s goal is for the country to grab 75% of the market share by 2030.
The setup couldn’t be better. With the supply of these vessels so tight, the cost of charters into Germany has doubled year-on-year to $200,000 a day.
By Alex Kimani for Oilprice.com
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