From left: BOI Director General Sanjaya Mohottala, Pearl Energy Director Tania Siegertsz and BOI Chairman Susantha Ratnayake at agreement signing
- Signs agreement with BOI; commercial operations to begin in 6 months
- Floating storage unit to initially have capacity of 1mn tonnes per annum
- Company expected to deploy small carriers to redistribute LNG to South India and Maldives
Pearl Energy (Pvt.) Ltd has signed an agreement with the Board of Investment (BOI) of Sri Lanka to set up a floating storage LNG trading facility at the Hambantota port, with an investment of US $ 97.2 million.
The LNG hub will become a landmark infrastructure development for the region, paving the way to broader access to natural gas as a primary fuel in South Asia.
Commencing commercial operations within six months, Pearl Energy will utilise a floating storage unit (FSU) with an initial capacity of one million tonnes per annum (MTPA).
Pearl Energy is expected to deploy small LNG carriers to redistribute LNG to South India and the Maldives, providing LNG as a clean and affordable alternative to the industries in these locations.
“It is our pleasure to embark on this journey of bringing clean energy to the doorstep of Sri Lanka and the region. Taking the ‘early mover’ advantage, we will strive to place Sri Lanka as a future LNG hub of the world,” Pearl Energy Director Tania Siegertsz said.
Factors, including the strategic location of Hambantota, newly established stable government and its investor-friendly policies and the fast-growing regional demand for LNG encouraged our investors led by Omar Siraj of Saudi Arabia to place their confidence on this project, despite the global economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” she added.
According to Siegertsz, Sri Lanka is extremely well-equipped to meet the change in dynamics in the global LNG market and consolidate its position as a key player for the future.
“Though our project is launched targeting regional trade, the fact that a world-class LNG hub will soon be within the port of Hambantota, we are confident that Sri Lanka too will be encouraged to convert its power plants to LNG, thus saving millions of dollars whilst also increasing the efficiency and producing more power to the national grid.
The port too could also commence using LNG for bunkering, thereby making the Hambantota port and its industrial zone as a ‘Clean Energy Zone’ of the future,” she said.