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Reuters: UPDATE 1-Gazprom aims for Sakhalin-2 LNG export by end-2008

Fri Dec 21, 2007 8:06am EST 

TOKYO, Dec 21 (Reuters) – Russia’s gas export monopoly Gazprom (GAZP.MM: Quote, Profile, Research) will try its best to begin first exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Sakhalin-2 to contracted customers by the end of 2008, its deputy chairman Alexander Ananenkov said on Friday.

His comments came shortly after the governor of Sakhalin said Sakhalin Energy, one of the world’s top LNG projects on Russia’s Pacific Sakhalin island, will delay first LNG exports to Asia by six months to spring 2009 due to problems with pipelines.

Sakhalin Energy, which is led by Gazprom and involves Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile, Research), Mitsui (8031.T: Quote, Profile, Research) and Mitsubishi (8058.T: Quote, Profile, Research), has sold over 90 percent of the planned 9.6 million tonnes per year LNG production under long-term contracts to customers in Japan, South Korea and North America’s West Coast.

Gazprom completed a deal to take 50 percent plus one share in the Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project earlier this year.

“Sakhalin-2 LNG supply contracts were struck before we obtained the stake, but Gazprom has been trying its best to start (LNG) supplies on time in 2008, just as contracted,” Ananenkov told a news conference in Tokyo through an interpreter. (Reporting by Osamu Tsukimori; editing by James Jukwey)

http://www.reuters.com/article/rbssEnergyNews/idUST20807120071221

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