Saudi Aramco has high ambitions to become a gas exporter, and given its domestic shortfall, overseas expansion is a key plank of this. However, FID on a US LNG export project it has lined up to participate in has been pushed back to 2021. Aramco initially signed an HOA with US firm Sempra covering a potential 25% stake in the 11mn t/y Port Arthur terminal in May 2019 (MEES, 24 May 2019) and the two parties reaffirmed their commitment in January (MEES, 10 January).

Since then, the immediate outlook for an already oversupplied LNG market has deteriorated and firms across the board are putting projects on hold. Sempra partially attributes the delay to the “state of the financial markets. I think the ability to go out and project finance Port Arthur in the current market is somewhat limited.” (CONTINUED - 170 WORDS)