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Sat 11 Jun 2011 10:49 AM

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Qatargas delivers first LNG cargo to Thailand

CEO says company is in pole position to open up new markets in Asia Pacific as LNG demand grows

Qatargas delivers first LNG cargo to Thailand
Qatargas has delivered its first ever cargo of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Thailand.

Qatargas said on Saturday it had delivered its first ever cargo of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Thailand.

The cargo was delivered to the new Map Ta Phut LNG Terminal as Thailand looks to increase its LNG imports of the cleaner-burning fuel to allow it to diversify away from oil and coal.

Khalid Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, CEO of Qatargas said: "Qatari LNG continues to have a key role to play in helping governments around the world improve the diversity of their energy supplies.

"We are pleased with this development which will help to meet the growing demand for energy in the Kingdom of Thailand."

Tanker Golar Viking delivered 131,000 cubic metres of LNG from Qatar in the spot market on May 31 for a trial run at the new $880 million terminal in eastern Thailand, which is on track to start commercial operations in July.

Al-Thani added: "The commissioning of the Map Ta Phut LNG terminal in Thailand marks the second terminal in less than two weeks, where Qatargas has provided commissioning cargos for a new terminal in the Asia-Pacific market-place.

"We feel that Qatargas is at the forefront of opening up new markets and guaranteeing the safe, long-term reliable supply of clean energy."

Wichai Pornkeratiwat, senior executive vice president, Gas Business Unit of PTT Public Company Limited, said: "LNG is one of the strategic sources of supplies to fulfill the domestic gas demand growth and to help Thailand building energy security in the long term."

Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Vietnam and possibly Sri Lanka and the Philippines are expected to become LNG importers in the next few years, adding to rapidly growing Asian demand for the supercooled fuel.

Thailand's terminal comes ahead of projects in neighbouring Malaysia and Singapore. Malaysia is building a 3.8 million-tpy LNG terminal in western Malacca state, due for completion mid-next year and is studying for another one in southern Johor state.

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