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Sempra, Repsol JV sign memorandum for Bolivian LNG

By the OGJ Online Staff

HOUSTON, Dec. 5, 2001 — Utility holding company Sempra Energy and a joint venture led by Repsol-YPF SA agreed to begin negotiations for a 20-year supply of Bolivian liquefied natural gas to be delivered to northwestern Mexico and southern California.

The proposed agreement will include the output of a two-train LNG plant on the Pacific coast of South America, which could export 800 MMcfd of gas from Bolivia to North America. The LNG will be delivered to the proposed Sempra Energy-CMS Energy Corp. terminal to be built near Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico (OGJ Online, Oct. 5, 2001).

The gas would serve new and existing power plants and industries in both Baja California and Southern California.

The JV Pacific LNG also includes BG Bolivia Corp. and Pan American Energy LLC (itself a JV of BP PLC and Bridas). The companies involved in Pacific LNG are also partners in Bolivia’s 13 tcf Margarita field, which will be the gas source. Repsol-YPF is the operator of Margarita.

Donald E. Felsinger, group president of Sempra Energy, said, “Gas from Bolivia is highly competitive with that from other sources in the Pacific, since the shipping distance is shorter.”

The proposed LNG receiving terminal, to be built in Baja California, will have a send-out capacity of 1 bcfd of natural gas. Commercial operation of the LNG terminal is scheduled to begin in late 2005-06 with Pacific LNG supplies being delivered to the terminal as soon as possible thereafter.