Jamaica’s natural gas market on schedule

Chair of the Electricity Sector Enterprise Team (ESET), in Jamaica, Dr. Vincent Lawrence says the project for the development of Jamaica’s natural gas market remains on schedule.

At a press conference on Tuesday, Lawrence said a supply agreement has been finalized between the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) and New Fortress Energy (NFE), which was selected as the developer of the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Supply and Gas Terminal Project.

An environment permit for the gas terminal has also been submitted by NFE to the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA). Engineering works have commenced and the terminal is expected to be completed by mid-2018.

In November last year, Cabinet endorsed the selection of NFE to supply LNG and install facilities to receive, store and re-gasify the fuel for use at the JPS’ 190 megawatt power plant in Old Harbour.

Agreements have been signed with the Chinese company, Power China for engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) of the Old Harbour facility, which is also expected to be completed mid-2018.

A memorandum of understanding between the Government and NFE was signed to guide the development of the natural gas market locally and to place Jamaica as a regional hub for the distribution of LNG.

Lawrence said major shareholders of JPS, Marubeni and Korea East West Power Company Limited have made a commitment to each inject up to 50 per cent of the US$90 million in equity required to develop the Old Harbour plant, which will serve to retire the existing 292-megawatt obsolete equipment.

He added that local financing has also resulted in the timely and full commitment of the US$206 million of funding required to execute the project.

The Government is moving to shift Jamaican electricity sector from an oil-dominated to LNG-fuelled system within the next two to three years.

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