BOGOTA, April 11 Toronto-listed oil company
Pacific Rubiales said it will spend as much as $200
million to build its pipeline in Colombia to export liquefied
natural gas (LNG), with a contract to supply Russia's Gazprom
for five years from 2015.
Pacific Rubiales is Colombia's biggest private oil producer
with average output in the Andean nation last year of 129,386
barrels per day and plans to export LNG using the 84-km (52
mile) 18-inch diameter pipeline from some time next year.
The pipeline, with 100 million cubic feet per day capacity,
will run from La Creciente field in the northern province of
Sucre which produces around 60 million cubic feet of gas a day,
to the Morrosquillo Gulf on Colombia's Caribbean coast, Pacific
Rubiales said this week. It is expected to cost between $150
million and $200 million.
"Colombia has sufficient natural gas reserves for the medium
term and enormous potential in the long term," Pacific Rubiales
said in a statement.
Pacific Rubiales has a contract to supply about half a
million tonnes of LNG annually, roughly 24.4 billion cubic feet,
to Gazprom from the second quarter of 2015 for five years which
would occupy about a quarter of the pipeline's capacity.
Colombia produced an average 1.17 billion cubic feet of gas
per day in 2013, according to the National Hydrocarbons Agency.
State-run Ecopetrol is also looking into the viability of
building a gas pipeline that would be capable of moving gas both
directions to allow for both exports and imports at different
times, a company official said.
Ecopetrol produces some gas jointly with Chevron Corp
in the north from onshore and offshore fields.
Pipelines are frequently bombed by left-wing FARC and ELN
guerrillas that shut them down for several days. There were 259
attacks in Colombia last year, a 72 percent increase from 2012,
defense ministry data showed. Analysts say the
increase is a means for FARC to boost its bargaining power in
peace talks with the government to end its five-decade conflict.
(Reporting by Peter Murphy; Editing by Grant McCool)