Moscow to ease LNG export rules in January: report


Russia’s energy minister, Alexander Novak, indicated Tuesday that liquefied natural gas exports from the country, currently dominated by state-run Gazprom, will be liberalized next January at the earliest, a Russian economic newspaper reported Tuesday.

In an interview with the Kommersant paper, Novak said necessary legislation will be compiled soon. The government aims for its passage this autumn and implementation on Jan. 1, Novak said.

Liberalization is important for the expansion of LNG exports to the Asia-Pacific region. A Japanese consortium is now working with Russian state-run oil firm Rosneft in LNG operations in the Russian Far East, including Sakhalin. In February, Russian President Vladimir Putin issued an instruction to study the gradual liberalization of LNG exports.

Canadian LNG

Japan Petroleum Exploration Co. said Tuesday it has applied to the Canadian government for permission to export liquefied natural gas from the country.

The oil developer, known as JAPEX, is seeking to export up to 19.68 million tons of LNG per year for 25 years beginning in 2019, with an eye on the future growth of LNG production in Canada.

JAPEX and Malaysian state oil company Petroliam Nasional Bhd., better known as Petronas, have been undertaking a joint shale gas development project in western Canada to produce 12 million tons of LNG a year. JAPEX has rights to receive 1.2 million tons annually, equivalent to its 10 percent stake in the project.