Final Yamal LNG tanker loads first cargo in Sabetta

The final ice-class LNG tanker set to work on the Yamal LNG project has marked its operational start with the loading of its first cargo.

The new Arc7 ice-class LNG tanker Yakov Gakkel, representing the fifteenth and final such vessel built specifically for the Yamal LNG project, loaded the 354th LNG cargo in the port of Sabetta. The cargo is set for China.

According to Wednesday’s statement by Novatek, Russia’s largest independent natural gas producer and LNG exporting player, the project’s Arc7 ice-class fleet is capable of shipping all of the LNG produced given the increased performance of the first three LNG trains and the planned launch of Train 4.

The company also added that the presence of all 15 tankers creates additional opportunities from 2020 for optimizing Yamal’s logistics, both westbound and eastbound, including the more extensive use of the Northern Sea Route.

The fleet of LNG carriers working on Yamal comprises vessels operated by Sovcomflot (one vessel) Dynagas (five vessels), MOL (three vessels), and Teekay (six vessels).

It is worth reminding that the 172,000-cbm Yakov Gakkel arrived in Sabetta earlier this month and in doing so, marked the completion of the $4.8 billion, 15-vessel fleet.

Yamal LNG is constructing a 17.4 mtpa natural gas liquefaction plant comprised of three LNG trains of 5.5 mtpa each, and one LNG train of 900 thousand tons per annum, utilizing the hydrocarbon resources of the South-Tambeyskoye field in the Russian Arctic.

The first LNG Train began production in the fourth quarter of 2017 and Trains 2 and 3 – in July 2018 and November 2018, respectively.

Yamal LNG is operated by Novatek, which holds a 50.1 stake, with Total, CNPC, and the Silk Road Fund as its partners with 20, 20, and 9.9 percent stakes, respectively.