(Updated with EGAS response)
Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS) said it has postponed BP’s LNG delivery for the later part of the year, denying having problems with payments for the LNG cargo.
Reuters initially cited sources as saying the delivery to Egypt has been pushed to October, after British Sapphire LNG carrier spent a fortnight waiting to unload its cargo at Ain Sokhna before being diverted to Brazil on January 7. The reason was reportedly a previously unpaid cargo.
In a response to Reuters, EGAS chairman Khaled Abdel Badie denied these reports, saying that the delivery was postponed for the country’s peak season. He added that Egypt is looking to charter a third FSRU during the first quarter of 2016.
It was reported in December last year that Egypt struggled to pay for the LNG cargoes it imports within the agreed 15-day period after unloading and sought to extend the period to 90 days.
Late payments were a result of Egypt’s weakening tourism sector, depleting foreign currency reserves and Central Bank’s reluctance to help cover the costs of LNG imports.
Egypt’s debt so far has risen to around US$500 million and in the case of BP cargoes deliveries are postponed for up to nine months.
However, the country is looking to secure funds from the World Bank, China and other institutions in the coming months.
LNG World News Staff