Helsingin Sanomat: Inkoo LNG terminal still has no customers

Inkoo LNG terminal in Finland.
Inkoo LNG terminal in Finland. Source: SCANPIX/Õhtuleht/Robin Roots

Finland has built a terminal to accommodate an FSRU carrying LNG in Inkoo, while there is no clarity how to pay for the project in the conditions of falling gas consumption. The initial idea prescribed the terminal's customers picking up the tab stretching into hundreds of millions of euros.

The floating regasification and storage unit (FSRU) Exemplar should arrive in Inkoo next week, while the terminal still lacks customers, Finnish daily Helsingin Sanomat writes.

Finland scrambled to create the capacity to receive LNG in spring after Russia threatened to cut off its supply. However, consumption of natural gas has fallen by half in Finland since the signing of the FSRU's rental contract.

The paper reports that the Finnish Finance Ministry finds commercial interest in LNG to be shaky.

The FSRU rental contract was signed for a decade and runs a total of €460 million or €126,000 a day.

Government allocates support for gas company until terminal finds clients

Finnish national gas company Gasgrid Finland is making preparations for covering the cost of renting the FSRU.

Gasgrid CEO Olli Sipilä said that it will take between one and thee years to reach positive cash flow.

Sipilä assured that interest in the terminal will be created once it starts working.

The Finnish government has allocated €105 million to a Gasgrid subsidiary to cover the first two years' expenses, which the finance ministry justified by pointing to energy security.

The first ship carrying LNG is expected to reach the terminal in January.

Gas consumption cut in half

October gas consumption came to 0.5 terawatt-hours in Finland, down from 1.4 TWh same period last year. While Finland's annual consumption has been around 25 TWh, this year's will be nowhere near that, the paper reports.

Just 10 TWh of natural gas had been consumed by the end of October.

FSRU Exemplar can regasify up to 5 billion cubic meters of gas annually that amounts to around 35 TWh when converted into energy.

The FSRU and Inkoo terminal are projected to bring just 2 TWh of gas to the grid this winter.

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Editor: Allan Aksiim, Marcus Turovski

Source: Helsingin Sanomat

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