Gazprom Enters Global Marine LNG Market with Summa Deal
The deal, which was signed last week, will see Gazprom and Summa Group cooperate on the utilisation of LNG as marine vessel bunker fuel, particularly in the case of marine vessels owned and operated by Summa.
Past this initial cooperation, however, Gazprom says the companies will also seek to enter several markets with the bunker fuel, with the possibility of cooperation in the Baltic and North Seas under consideration. Besides the supply of the fuel, the companies will discuss development the additional infrastructure required for such an operation, including the construction of LNG storage facilities.
Gazprom also says that the parties will consider the development of LNG as a bunker fuel in the Pacific Ocean, particularly in the Black and Mediterranean Seas, where Summa Group is already currently operating vessels and port infrastructure.
The deal will help to ensure that marine vessels meet impending regulations for emissions, Gazprom Deputy Chairman Alexander Medvedev said.
"The tough mandatory restrictions on emissions for marine vessels, carrying out transportation operations in the Baltic and North Seas, to be imposed after 2015, is the most important factor of switching to alternative fuel," he said. "LNG is the only fuel that meets the requirements for limitation of emissions by ship engines without the need to install expensive filters and it is favorably priced compared to low-sulfur petrochemicals.
"The technologies for vessels, ship engines and storage facilities for the vessels running on LNG are available and tested."
President of the Summa Group, Alexander Vinokurov, who signed the deal with Alexander Medvedev, said the deal had the potential to have a positive effect globally.
"I am sure it will have a long-term positive effect on the environmental friendliness of the marine transport not only in Russia but worldwide and will become a new industry standard," he said after the deal.