China's Jiasheng Gas Co Ltd, an independent gas distributor, has agreed an engineering and construction deal to build a 2.5 billion yuan ($380 million) liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage and receiving facility in east China, the Shanghai Oil and Gas Exchange and a company executive said.
The little-known firm is among a group of companies outside the dominant state oil and gas giants that are expected to lead new investment in LNG import terminals over the next decade as China opens up the sector to more private participation.
The first phase of the project, to be built at Jiangyin port in Jiangsu province, will include two 100,000 cubic metre storage tanks and will have an annual total handling capacity of 1.5 million tonnes, the state-run exchange said in a statement posted on its official wechat account.
A Jiasheng Gas senior executive confirmed the project to Reuters.
The company has awarded the contract to build the terminal to China Wuhuan Engineering Co Ltd, and plans to add another 160,000 cubic meter tank under a second phase of the project, taking total capacity to 3 million tonnes a year.
The facility - which will take about two years to build - will supply fuel to the cities of Wuxi and Jiangyin in Jiangsu, a top natural gas-consuming region, as well as to inland areas via smaller tankers along the Yangtze river, the exchange said.
Jiasheng operates two berths at Jiangyin port each capable to anchor 50,000 tonnage vessels, the exchange added.
($1 = 6.5299 yuan) (Reporting by Chen Aizhu; editing by Richard Pullin)
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