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Lloyds List: Gazprom takes further strides on road to realising global LNG goals: Under an agreement with Shell Western LNG BV, the LNG will be delivered in early September to the Cove Point terminal, Maryland, where Shell holds regasification capacity.: Wednesday Aug 10, 2005

 

First cargo bought by trading arm and Shtokman shortlist is made, writes Tony Gray

 

Russian gas giant Gazprom has taken three more steps towards its ambition of becoming a force in the global liquefied natural gas industry.

 

Gazprom Marketing ' Trading, the group's UK-based marketing and trading arm, has purchased its first LNG cargo, which will be delivered to the fast-growing US market.

 

The subsidiary has also appointed a director of LNG.

 

Meanwhile, the parent company has disclosed a list of nine foreign companies from which it will compile a shortlist for participation in development of the giant Shtokman gas field in the Barents Sea and an associated liquefaction plant.

 

Gazprom Marketing ' Trading has bought its first LNG cargo from the UK's BG Group.

 

Under an agreement with Shell Western LNG BV, the LNG will be delivered in early September to the Cove Point terminal, Maryland, where Shell holds regasification capacity. The cargo will be delivered on an ex-ship basis.

 

Gazprom Marketing ' Trading commented: 'With this first LNG cargo delivery into the US, Gazprom has taken the first step towards becoming a leading LNG supply, shipping, and marketing company.

 

'Gazprom is now focusing on its strategic goal to expand its LNG marketing and trading activities in the coming months and years in preparation for the first availability of Russian-produced LNG in a few years time.'

 

The company said details about the geographical source of the LNG and shipping arrangement were confidential.

 

But a spokesman added that Gazprom looked forward 'to growing in this area'.

 

The UK subsidiary also announced that John Hattenberger, previously senior vice-president at Marathon International Petroleum, has joined the company.

 

Gazprom also confirmed this week that it had received proposals from nine overseas groups keen to help it develop Shtokman.

 

There are no surprises among the names which have been widely reported: US giants ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips and Chevron; France's Total; Japan's Sumitomo and Mitsui; Norway's Statoil and Norsk Hydro; and the Anglo-Dutch Shell.

 

The technical feasibility studies performed by these companies and their proposals were now being examined by Gazprom's experts in order to shortlist them before holding preliminary negotiations. 

 

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