China’s state-controlled Beijing Gas Group has won state approval to build a terminal to receive liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin, three sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.
This will make Beijing Gas one of the few operators of LNG terminals in China backed by a local government, in an industry dominated by state firms PetroChina, Sinopec Corp and China National Offshore Oil Company.
It also paves the way for Beijing Gas to officially launch into global LNG.
The sources, who declined to be named because they are not authorized to speak to the press, told Reuters Beijing Gas is preparing to tender for long-term LNG supplies, without giving further details.
One of the sources said the approved capacity of the terminal is for 5 million tonnes a year, giving no timeline on when the facility would be built.
Construction of LNG receiving terminals typically takes two to three years.
A Beijing Gas Group official reached by Reuters declined to comment.
China is the world’s third-largest natural gas consumer and second-largest LNG importer after Japan.