The Croatian government is determined to expedite the process of setting up the country’s first LNG import terminal on the island of Krk.
The terminal has been declared a project of strategic importance in July last year and is seen as a major factor in the diversification and security of supply for the southeastern Europe.
The European Commission has made the Croatian liquefied natural gas terminal a part of its EU LNG and gas storage strategy.
LNG Croatia (LNG Hrvatska), the company developing the LNG terminal, and stakeholders involved in the project, have been instructed by the government to speed up the preparation and implementation of the first phase of the project that entails setting up of the floating storage and regasification unit, according to a document adopted at the government’s regular meeting on Wednesday.
A contract with investors for the construction of the first phase of the LNG project could be signed within the next 60 to 90 days, prime minister Tihomir Oreskovic said.
Earlier in April, the Croatian government opted to develop the floating LNG terminal as it is expected it could be completed in 2018. The floating LNG terminal would not exclude the following three stages of the project, that include the construction of the land-based terminal, if the development is declared feasible.
The project that would reportedly have the initial capacity of around two billion cubic meters of gas per year, a lot less than the 6 billion cubic meters of annual capacity planned for the land-based terminal, has received the backing of the United States.
At a meeting with the Croatian deputy prime minister Tomislav Karamarko in March, U.S. energy envoy Amos Hochstein said the United States are willing to help in the construction of the gas transmission system that would integrate the LNG terminal into the existing Croatian network.
European Investment Bank began its appraisal of the project based on the proposed land-based option, as it could fund up to €339 million of the project’s total cost that is in the region of €678 million.
The land-based terminal on the island of Krk would include a tanker jetty, 2 LNG storage tanks with a total storage capacity of up to 360,000 cbm, and have a throughput capacity of 6 billion cubic meters per year.
LNG World News Staff