Peru ships LNG to Mexico, higher royalties likely

lunes 26 de marzo de 2012 18:43 ART

* Government wants to renegotiate royalties

* Most LNG exports go to countries other than Mexico

By Patricia Velez

LIMA, March 26 (Reuters) - Peru has started exporting liquefied natural gas to the Manzanillo regasificaton plant in Mexico and plans to ramp up shipments to the facility now that it has opened, the head of Peru's state energy agency said on Monday.

Spanish oil company Repsol-YPF - in charge of Peru's LNG facility - sent its first shipment to the plant this month. Repsol has a long-term contract with the Manzanillo plant, though it had previously sent a couple of ships to two other Mexican regasification facilities.

The export contract was signed years ago when prices were low. Since then prices have risen and the fuel now costs more on Peru's domestic market than it does for exports.

To address this price distortion, the government of President Ollanta Humala has proposed raising the royalty it charges on LNG exports of gas from Peru's Camisea fields.

"It will be just over 100 million cubic feet per day on average, between 100 and 150 million cubic feet a day," Aurelio Ochoa, head of Perupetro, which is responsible for negotiating royalties on behalf of the State, said when asked about the quantity to be exported this year to Manzanillo.

Repsol-YPF will eventually export about 420 million cubic feet per day to Manzanillo once the plant is operating at full capacity.   Continuación...