Oil and gas giants Exxon Mobil and Qatar Petroleum have recently confirmed that they have finalized the decision to fund a liquefied natural gas (LNG) export project worth over $10 billion near the Gulf Coast in Texas.
Citing reliable sources, the latest development of the export terminal would fuel the growing shipments of LNG from the U.S. to overseas. The country’s Department of Energy had reported last month that LNG would be playing a significant role in U.S. energy exports surpassing imports by 2020, an achievement the nation has not witnessed for almost 70 years.
The plans regarding LNG export from the Golden Pass terminal of Exxon apparently represents the resurgence of energy production in U.S., sources commented. The facility was initially constructed for importing LNG, but the increase in natural gas production in the country over the last ten years has driven American drillers to look for buyers overseas.
Exxon has indicated that retooling of the terminal, located near Port Author in Texas, would commence in this quarter. The energy major anticipates that the facility will start operations in 2024 and could be capable of producing nearly 16 million tons of LNG per year.
Records show that in 2017, around 14.3 million tons of LNG were exported in total from the U.S., with the exports surging to 15 million tons for the first three quarters on 2018. Trade in LNG is growing, especially in Asia, and had reached about 300 million tons worldwide in 2017, with countries like China aiming to switch from coal-powered energy generation to cleaner fuels for improving quality of air.
Qatar Petroleum, partner of Exxon in the Golden Pass project, is holding a 70% stake in the development while Exxon holds the remaining 30%, the sources informed. Exxon’s investment forms part of its strategy to investment $50 billion in U.S. manufacturing facilities over the coming five years, focusing mainly on the Gulf Coast. The terminal could create 9,000 jobs and also support 200 permanent positions while being built, Exxon suggested.