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Mon 23 Nov 2009 06:21 PM

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Shell delays Qatargas4 project by a year

Startup is now planned for late 2010, first cargo possibly pushed into 2011.

Royal Dutch Shell said it had delayed its $8bn Qatargas 4 liquefied natural gas project by around a year, with startup now planned for late 2010 and first cargo possibly pushed into 2011.

"We had been planning for a startup in early 2010 but now we expect that to come in late 2010," a spokeswoman said on Monday, adding the slippage represented a delay of 10 months.

She declined to say when first cargoes would load commence but a statement from the company said ramp-up of the project could continue into 2011, raising the prospect the facility may not be in a position to load ships until then.

The delay was due to contractors struggling to keep up with the pace of developments in Qatar's gas industry, the spokeswoman said.

The Qatargas 4 project will produce 7.8 million tonnes of the natural gas cooled to liquid so it can be exported in ships.

State-run Qatar Petroleum owns 70 percent of the project, while Shell owns the rest. Gas will be exported to the United States and China. (Reuters)

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Shell DID NOT delay the Project 1 year but rather the Contractor fell 1 year behind schedule. This is a BIG differnce.