RPT-Russia's Novatek sells first Yamal LNG cargo to Petronas LNG UK​

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MOSCOW, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Russia’s largest non-state gas producer Novatek has sold its first liquefied natural gas cargo of 170,000 cubic metres from the Yamal LNG project, with Petronas LNG UK Ltd (PLUK) the buyer.

Novatek launched loadings from the $27 billion Yamal LNG project on Friday.

Novatek’s head Leonid Mikhelson has said Yamal LNG will ship three gas cargoes by the end of 2017 and start selling fuel under long-term contracts after April 2018.

According to the Reuters data, the first tanker, called Christophe de Margerie after the ex-head of France’s Total , sailed westwards from the Yamal port of Sabetta.

Mikhelson has said the first cargo will be sold to Novatek’s “Asian portfolio”.

The first phase of the project was completed earlier in December. Other phases are due to on stream in 2018 and 2019.

The project will eventually have four processing units, known as trains, with total capacity of 17.5 million tonnes a year. Three trains will have capacity of 5.5 million tonnes each and one will have capacity of 1 million tonnes. (Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin, editing by David Evans)