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ADNOC to supply first cargo into Bahrain LNG project: oil minister

Abu Dhabi — Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. will supply the first cargo into Bahrain's new floating LNG import and re-gasification terminal in February or March, the country's oil minister said Monday.

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"The commissioning cargo for Bahrain LNG [will] come from ADNOC. [They] offered the best price for Bahrain's commissioning cargo," Bahrain's Mohammed bin Khalifa al-Khalifa told reporters on the sidelines of the ADIPEC conference in Abu Dhabi.

The Bahrain LNG project, which has a capacity of 0.8 Bcf/d, lies within the Khalifa bin Salman Port facility. The country currently consumes about 1.5 Bcf/d, all sourced domestically.

"[We] still intend to buy LNG only from spot market...Spot seems like the best option but obviously we are looking at other strategies," Khalifa said, adding that he had not awarded any other cargoes yet.

Nogaholding, the investment arm of Bahrain's National Oil and Gas Authority, one of the owners of the Bahrain LNG project, has said that all cargoes will be bought from the spot market and not on term contracts.

"The Bahrain LNG project is financed through a combination of debt and equity on a 75:25 debt to equity ratio. There have been discussions about potentially connecting to the gas grids of GCC countries," Khalifa said.

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A spokesman at ADNOC was not available for comment.

Bahrain has been trying to tap its own domestic gas resources to meet domestic demand. It discovered the Khaleej al-Bahrain discovery in April, which could hold more than 80 billion barrels of shale oil and 20 Tcf of gas.

The discovery in the 2,000 square kilometer Khaleej al-Bahrain basin off the western coast is the largest in the kingdom since 1932, dwarfing the Persian Gulf state's current reserves, according to its Higher Committee for Natural Resources and Economic Security.

The find will be a significant boost to Bahrain, one of the oldest oil producers in the region, but also one of the smallest.

--Miriam Malek,

--Herman Wang,

--Rosemary Griffin,

--Edited by Daniel Lalor,