Cheniere Energy Selects Bechtel for LNG Terminal Projects

Cheniere Energy has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Bechtel Corporation to perform the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) for its proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) receiving terminals at Corpus Christi, Texas, and Sabine Pass, La.

Bechtel will work over the next few months to develop a lump-sum turnkey estimate for the terminals, based on the front end engineering design (FEED) currently being completed. The two facilities will each consist of two unloading docks capable of handling ships of up to 250,000 c.m. and three 160,000 c.m. storage tanks, with peak vaporization capacity of 2.6 bcf/day each.

Charif Souki, chairman and CEO of Cheniere, said, "Signing the MOU with Bechtel is another important milestone along the path of developing these terminals. Bechtel is one of the largest engineering and construction firms in the world, and they have considerable experience with LNG facilities. We want to finalize contract terms and progress rapidly from the FEED to a full EPC phase with Bechtel."

"We have now lived for almost one year in a $4.00 to $5.00 gas price environment, but have been unable to reverse the decline in domestic production. We anticipate that the reactivation of existing terminals and their expansion will help offset some of this decline, but by 2006 we will have exhausted short-term solutions. We expect to file an application for permits with FERC in January 2004 and complete the safety and environmental reviews necessary for our application," Souki said. "It takes three years to build a receiving facility, and we want to be ready as soon as possible. We are fortunate to have partners in the communities of Corpus Christi and Sabine Pass and at Bechtel who are working hard to meet a demanding schedule. We hope to have the facilities in service as early as 2007."