Fluxys’ 2019 profit boosted by rising LNG terminal activity

Belgian gas infrastructure company and Zeebrugge LNG terminal operator, Fluxys, posted a rise in profit as the liquefied natural gas import facility reports record activity. 

Image courtesy of Fluxys
Image courtesy of Fluxys

Fluxys reported a profit of €69.5 million in 2019, a €15 million increase compared to the year 2018.

Zeebrugge LNG terminal saw a total of 130 vessels dock at the terminal, surpassing the previous record of 82 vessels in 2009. Compared with 2018, more than twice as many carriers came to unload LNG, and the amount of natural gas injected by the terminal into the network was almost three times higher. The number of LNG transshipment operations doubled.

Traffic for loading small LNG carriers in 2019 remained at the same level as in 2018, while almost 1,200 more LNG trailers were loaded.

The company noted its LNG terminal prospects have been boosted by the start of the Yamal LNG transshipment contract as well as a new deal signed with Qatar Petroleum.

In December 2019, the Zeebrugge LNG terminal commissioned the newly built fifth storage tank and associated process facilities for commercial use. This marked the start of the long-term transshipment contract concluded with Yamal Trade in 2015.

The new facilities allow transshipments between ice-class LNG vessels from the Yamal production terminal and conventional LNG carriers without the two having to be docked simultaneously.

Under the 20-year contract with Yamal Trade, up to 8 million tonnes of LNG can be transshipped at the Zeebrugge terminal annually. This could mean additional traffic of 214 LNG carriers per year.

In September 2019, Qatar Terminal Limited booked on a long-term basis the available unloading slots as the current long-term contracts expire. The agreement runs until 2044 with the option of early termination at the end of 2039 under certain conditions.

Fluxys further noted its investment in property, plant and equipment totaled €91.3 million, compared with €78.1 million in 2018. In 2019, €14.4 million was spent on transmission projects, €4.5 million on storage infrastructure and €72.4 million on LNG infrastructure projects, mainly the construction of a fifth tank at the Zeebrugge LNG terminal.

In regards to the COVID-19 outbreak, the company added that its essential services remain operational while complying with all the health and safety measures recommended by the Belgian authorities.