Singapore starts its first fully-LNG operated power plant

SINGAPORE, June 3 Tue Jun 3, 2014 4:38am EDT

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SINGAPORE, June 3 (Reuters) - Singapore officially started its first power plant that fully operates on liquefied natural gas (LNG) on Tuesday, said the head of the company that owns the facility, as the city state tries to curb its reliance on piped natural gas.

"Traditionally, we only rely on piped natural gas coming from our neighbours, Malaysia and Indonesia ... whereas LNG is international so you can source it from every part of the world," said Yu Tat Ming, CEO of PacificLight Power.

Located on Jurong Island, the S$1.2 billion (US$955 million) plant adds to a slew of projects planned to boost Singapore's profile as an LNG trading hub.

Singapore earlier this year announced plans to build a second LNG receiving terminal, in addition to a first terminal with a capacity of 9 million tonnes per year (tpy) by 2017.

The 800-megawatt facility, which is about 6 percent of the total installed capacity in Singapore, will be the largest consumer of LNG in the state.

PLP currently supplies electricity to industrial users only, and its imports make up around 25 percent of BG Group's 2.6-2.7 million tpy contracted supply to the LNG terminal, Yu said.

The Britain-based company is currently the sole aggregator of LNG in Singapore.

Singapore's electricity demand is expected to grow by about 2-4 percent annually over the next few years, according to a spokesperson from the Energy Market Authority (EMA).

There are currently no plans to add any other completely LNG-fuelled power plants, EMA said.

PLP is a 30-70 joint venture between Petronas Power Sdn Bhd and FPM Power Holdings Ltd. MGen and First Pacific Co Ltd own FPM. (Reporting by Jane Xie; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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