Image Credits : Yard of choice: Samsung Heavy Industries' facility on Geoje Island, South Korea.Photo: Qatargas |Visual for illustration purpose
2 minutes read

Samsung poised for floating LNG newbuild EPCI prize

Delfin LNG is seeking a further extension until mid-2029 from the US Department of Energy to the timeline for maiden liquefied natural gas exports from its greenfield Delfin Deepwater Port floating LNG (FLNG) project, for which South Korea’s Samsung Heavy Industries could ultimately supply up to four such facilities.

As Delfin moves towards this year taking the final investment decision on Delfin FLNG1 and Delfin FLNG 2, the US operator confirmed it has negotiated and agreed on major terms of a near-ready-for-execution engineering, procurement, construction and integration (EPCI) agreement with Samsung — supported by US-headquartered Black & Veatch for the topsides liquefaction technology — for the first newbuild FLNG vessel.

That FLNG facility will have liquefaction capacity of approximately 3.6 million tonnes per annum, based on the front- end engineering and design (FEED) work that Delfin completed with the two contractors in 2020, with further optimisations and detailing conducted in post-FEED work during the following year.

Delfin also is negotiating a slot reservation agreement with Samsung to ensure that construction activities on the first FLNG vessel can commence soon, and which will give the project operator an exclusive right to the shipyard slot needed for the construction and delivery of the vessel in 2028.

In the coming months, Delfin expects to execute the slot reservation agreement, and to issue a Limited Notice To Proceed to Samsung to begin work on the floater, and then to execute the EPCI agreement.

Delfin said it is “uniquely situated” as the only US FLNG project that has received non-FTA (non-Free Trade Agreement) export authorisation from DOE and the only LNG export project with (conditional) approval and a favourable Record of Decision from the Maritime Administration under the Deepwater Port Act.

“[We do] not propose any change in the nature of its project, nor in its existing export authorisations except to modify the timing condition so as to allow it to commence export operations from the Delfin Deepwater Port by no later than 1 June 2029,” Delfin notified the DOE.

The LNG will be exported from FLNG vessels moored at Delfin’s Deepwater Port, located approximately 37.4 to 40.8 nautical miles offshore Cameron Parish, Louisiana.

Delfin envisages a modular project consisting of four separate FLNG facilities, each of which may move forward individually independent of the others.

Contracts totalling of 2.5 million to 3 million tpa are needed to support FID for the first FLNG vessel and the Delfin Deepwater Port, which will be constructed at an estimated cost of more than $2.5 billion.

The US project operator said it has “ample commercial contracts” for that purpose, having secured long-term contracts with five LNG offtakers for a total of 3.3 million tpa — some of which may not be sourced from Delfin’s first FLNG vessel — with additional volumes in advanced commercial negotiations that will result in financial underpinnings for the second FLNG facility as well.

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