Korea Gas plans to increase LNG storage capacity 72% by 2012

July 21, 2007 - 0:0

SEOUL (Bloomberg) -- Korea Gas Corp., the world’s largest buyer of liquefied natural gas, plans to increase storage capacity 72 percent by 2012 to meet higher demand for the fuel during winter months.

Korea Gas operates three receiving terminals and will add 20 storage tanks to expand capacity by 3.7 million kiloliters, it said in an e-mailed statement. The new capacity is enough to supply the nation’s households for about 42 days. South Korea, Asia’s third-largest economy, swaps cargoes with utilities in Japan and Taiwan to ease shortages between December and March. Two-thirds of South Korea's LNG consumption falls during winter. The state-run utility has 40 gas storage tanks with a capacity of 5.16 million kiloliters and has said it plans to increase that number to 65 by 2013, as well as build a fourth receiving terminal. The document of July 18 didn’t lay out plans for after 2012. LNG is natural gas that has been chilled to liquid form, reducing it to one-six-hundredth of its original volume at minus 161 degrees Celsius (minus 259 Fahrenheit), for transportation by ship to destinations not connected by pipeline. On arrival, it’s turned back into gas for distribution to power plants, factories and households. The company added two new tanks, or 280,000 kiloliters of capacity, this year, the statement shows. Korea Gas will add 480,000 kiloliters in 2008, a further 480,000 kiloliters in 2009, 1 million kiloliters in 2010, 1.2 million kiloliters in 2011 and 540,000 kiloliters in 2012. The size of the utility’s tanks range from 100,000 kiloliters to 200,000 kiloliters. To secure additional capacity, Korea Gas said in May it will form a venture with Oman’s government to store LNG in the Middle East and to trade the fuel