Argentina paving the way to renew gas exports

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Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Argentina's energy ministry has issued a resolution that establishes the procedure for the authorization of natural gas exports and repeals a 1998 resolution that established the regulation for such exports.

"The seasonality of natural gas demand in the country, with surplus during [the southern hemisphere] summer months, poses a challenge for the economic viability of production projects," according to the resolution published on Wednesday.

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The ministry highlights the need to create an "expeditious" process to grant export permits while at the same time ensuring that local demand is covered, amid the country's participation in regional energy integration.

To increase transparency, information provided in export authorization requests will be available to possible internal offtakers, those interested in carrying out transport and distribution investments, and competent authorities.

The resolution opens the door to renewed gas exports to Chile, according to the ministry, which highlights that the export of surplus gas to the neighboring country was suspended in 2004 due to Argentina's energy crisis.

"Thanks to investments carried out in Vaca Muerta and the surplus of gas in these first 18 months of investment we can begin to export again," said the ministry.

The latest resolution is available here and the annex, which defines the gas export authorization procedure, at this link

NEW PIPELINE

In related news, Argentine press reported that energy authorities are evaluating a project of Transportadora Gas del Norte to build a US$1.2bn gas pipeline from Vaca Muerta to Rosario, capital of Santa Fe province.

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Pictured: Argentine energy minister Javier Iguacel (left) and his Chilean counterpart, Susana Jiménez, at a bilateral meeting in Santiago on Wednesday.