ExxonMobil exits Pakistan in a major project of Liquefied natural gas (LNG). It may be a great threat to Pakistan’s plan to boost its energy especially gas.
It has also come to light that French oil company Total and Japan’s Mitsubishi may also leave its projects in Pakistan. However, nothing is confirmed. The reasons behind these upcoming issues have been blamed on the difference among the six-member group in Port Qasim project in Karachi.
A senior Pakistani government official said that chances of the success of the project have declined greatly after ExxonMobil exits Pakistan.
Qatar Petroleum, the world’s biggest LNG producer, Turkish developer Global Energy Infrastructure Ltd (GEIL) and Norway’s Hoegh LNG, which will provide the Floating Storage Regasification Unit (FSRU), are the other partners.
A well developed pipeline grid, widespread industrial demand and the biggest natural gas-powered vehicle fleet in Asia after China and Iran make Pakistan appropriate for LNG. An official estimates show imports could jump five times to 30 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) by 2022.
Hasil Bizenjo, Pakistan’s Maritime Affairs minister in charge of ports informed that a firm from the US has shown inclination to join another project. Bizenjo added that, “They are thinking to build a new terminal in Port Qasim.”
An official informed that, ExxonMobil exits Pakistan due to conflicts with the existing partners especially with the developer.
It is expected that new investors will join Pakistan in LNG projects. Companies like Trafigura and Gunvor are already working in LNG projects in Pakistan. It is probable that industry’s giant like Swiss trading house Vitol may join. However, Vitol did not give any formal comment.
LNG has helped improved that energy situation of Pakistan. Furthermore, it is predicted that if LNG projects are implemented without hurdles it may solve the gas shortage in winters in Pakistan.