First LNG regasification plant for West Africa

MALABO, Equatorial Guinea: August 20, 2019. Equatorial Guinea has begun the construction of the first LNG storage and regasification plant on Africa’s west coast.

While West Africa is a major global exporter of gas from Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea, this is the first facility to encourage the import and use of African gas in Africa.

The new plant is being built at the Port of Akonikien by local contractor Elite Construcciones and will include storage capacity of 14,000 cubic metres, a truck loading station and 12 kilometres of gas and diesel pipelines.

Gabriel Mbaga Obiang Lima, Equatorial Guinea minister of Mines and Hydrocarbons, said the terminal is the first of many projects under the country’s ‘LNG2AFRICA’ initiative. “At a time when Africa’s large-scale LNG projects are making headlines, let’s remind ourselves that smaller-scale projects addressing the needs of energy-deficient regions provide opportunities to monetise our gas for our economies, and to mobilise our local companies around key infrastructure projects for the region.”

Once stored and regasified, the gas will be delivered by truck and pipeline to support the country’s power and cement sectors as well as neighbouring West and Central African countries seeking to increase their use of natural gas for electricity and industries.

The project’s infrastructure includes the world’s largest cryogenic bullet tanks, built by the US Corban Energy Group. “Each tank will take about 12 hours to move the 1,000 metres from the port to the new plant,” explained Elite Construcciones CEO Marisol Ovono Nchama.

“Elite Construcciones has worked closely with German companies Noordtec and ESC on the design and construction of the plant, and we are all very proud to be part of this achievement and look forward to more LNG2AFRICA projects,” she added.

In April of this year, Equatorial Guinea signed an agreement with Atlas Oranto Petroleum, Noble Energy, Marathon Oil, Glencore and Guvnor, to invest nearly US$350 million on pooling supply from stranded gas fields in Equatorial Guinea and the Gulf of Guinea.