Chile to resume natural gas exports to Argentina

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Friday, May 19, 2017

Chile will export natural gas to Argentina during the South American winter for a second consecutive year.

A consortium comprising national oil company Enap, Enel Generación Chile and CGE subsidiary Aprovisionadora Global de Energía will send regasified LNG from Chile's Quintero import terminal to Argentine state-owned energy company Enarsa via the GasAndes pipeline.

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The parties signed a contract on Friday authorizing the dispatch of up to 276Mm3 of gas between June 1 and August 31 of this year, averaging out to 3Mm3/d, Enap said in a statement on Friday. The contract allows the two countries to increase the volume if needed by Argentina, and if Chile is able to supply it.

Enap, Enel and Aprovisionadora Global de Energía will supply 54%, 32% and 14% of the total volume, respectively.

Enap did not say how much Enarsa will pay for the imports.

GasAndes was originally constructed to export Argentine gas to Chile. However, Argentina cut off supply during the first decade of this century amid declining production and rising internal demand, which led Chile to build LNG regasification terminals in Quintero and the northern port of Mejillones.

Amid curtailed gas dispatch from Bolivia, Argentina's main external gas supplier, and with the Escobar and Bahía Blanca LNG terminals operating at full capacity, Argentina last year began importing regasified LNG from Chile in order to meet surging winter demand.