New Argentine government hopes LNG project with Petronas will move ahead

KUALA LUMPUR: The new Argentine government is hoping that the multibillion-dollar joint liquefied natural gas (LNG) project with Malaysia's national oil and gas company, Petronas, will move ahead.

"We are hoping that we can give all the assurance that is needed for this investment to go forward," said Argentine Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship Minister Diana Mondino to Bernama.

Mondino, who is here in Malaysia for her inaugural official visit, is expected to have a meeting with Petronas' management on Monday (March 18) to discuss the latter's activities in Argentina.

On Sept 1, 2022, Petronas signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Argentina's largest integrated oil and gas company YPF to pursue a collaboration in the South American nation in an integrated LNG project and other areas, including upstream oil, petrochemicals and clean energy solutions.

In addition to the MoU, YPF and Petronas' operating entity in Argentina, Petronas E&P Argentina S.A., executed a joint study and development agreement towards the study and potential development of the Argentina Integrated LNG project.

It will encompass dedicated upstream gas production, dedicated pipeline and infrastructure development, LNG production as well as marketing and shipping.

The final investment decision (FID) for the projects will be undertaken after diligent technical and commercial assessment has been conducted, backed by conducive fiscal terms, legislation and policies.

Petronas' strategic alliance with YPF began in 2014 through its partnership in the La Amarga Chica project, Vaca Muerta, as part of its growth aspiration in the Americas.

"Argentina could export a lot of gas to the world but we don't have the technology to liquify that gas and transportation yet… not at that level it should be," said Mondino.

"There have been a lot of political changes in my country, but we are far more expeditious now. Actually, this thing could have started many years ago and it didn't. We are going to push forward for this kind of investment," she said.

It was reported on March 13, 2024, that YPF and Petronas have postponed by a year the timeline to reach the FID on the first phase of the project. - Bernama

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