© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Cars are seen at an Exxon gas station in Brooklyn, New York City, U.S., November 23, 2021. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
HOUSTON (Reuters) -Venture Global LNG said on Tuesday it would supply two million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) per annum to Exxon Mobil Corp (NYSE:XOM), a sign of its rapid rise in the ranks of LNG suppliers and the strong global demand for U.S. LNG.
Venture Global LNG, which plans to build four LNG plants using a modular design that streamlines construction and cuts production costs, has emerged as a powerful force in LNG. The company this year started exports at its first Calcasieu Pass, Louisiana, plant and the Exxon deal will help advance two other proposed facilities.
The United States has become a major player in LNG and this year is expected to surpass Australia and Qatar as the world’s largest exporter, delivering more than 12.2 billion cubic feet per day. Global demand for U.S. LNG has surged since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which tightened an already under-supplied market.
Under the deal, Exxon’s Asia Pacific unit will purchase one million tonnes of LNG each year from Venture Global’s Plaquemines LNG facility, which is now under construction, and its planned Calcasieu Pass 2 facility. Both are in Louisiana.
The deal will help advance Exxon’s LNG sales growth in Asia and in China, already the world’s largest importer of LNG. Exxon is a 30% partner with Qatar Energy in the Golden Pass LNG facility now under construction near Sabine Pass, Texas. That $10 billion facility is expected to start processing fuel in 2024.
“We look forward to working with Venture Global as we continue to grow ExxonMobil’s LNG portfolio and progress our plans to reliably deliver natural gas from the U.S. Gulf Coast to global markets,” said Peter Clarke, Exxon’s senior vice president of LNG.
Venture Global, founded by a former energy lawyer and investment banker, has rocketed to the top ranks of LNG developers with its ability to obtain financing and rapidly build plants as rivals struggled. Its Calcasieu Pass plant was producing LNG 29 months after receiving a financial go-ahead.