Pemex to build $6 billion LNG plant

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) will develop a US$6 billion gas liquefaction facility on the Pacific coast to enhance its export opportunities to Asia. The company said that it is aiming for a 2020 start date.

The goal is to take advantage of Mexico’s geographic location and opportunities created by market conditions to transport natural gas produced in the Gulf of Mexico through the Isthmus of Tehuantepec for process and exportation to Asia and Oceania, said Director General of Pemex Gas and Basic Petrochemicals Sibaja Alejandro Martinez, on 5 November 2014.  

A battery of feasibility, technical and other studies to identify an idea location near Salina Cruz is set to begin this month.

The facility will be the second phase of a planned $1.4 billion investment in petroleum-related infrastructure in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, Martinez said, in a project he called the Transoceanic Belt.

The Transoceanic Belt, also slated for completion by 2020, is a planned corridor between the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean that Pemex announced on 10 April. Pemex intends for the additional infrastructure to include pipelines for natural gas, propane, and naphtha, along with storage and port facilities. In addition, that corridor will connect the Pajaritos, Veracruz terminal with the refinery in Salina Cruz, Oaxaca. The company cited the desire to export to the global market as the primary driver for the additional development.

"The strategy will allow fuel exports to the Far East, capitalizing on the existing price gap between North America and markets in Asia," Pemex said.

The next day, on 11 April, Pemex and GDF Suez signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to collaborate on future LNG projects, including infrastructure and gas liquefaction facilities. Pemex has progressed to partner with many other companies, signing a string of MOUs in the months before and after the passage of the country’s historic energy reform.

According to data by the US Energy Information Administration, Mexico is a net importer of natural gas, despite its considerable natural resources. 

Image of Pemex wellhead by Sarah Parker Musarra

Read more:

Eni, Pemex sign cooperation agreement

Pemex, Chevron team up

Pemex, ExxonMobil ink agreement

Mexico's Pena Nieto signs reform into law

Categories: LNG Pipelines Asia Natural Gas North America Gulf of Mexico Liquefaction

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