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Bids for Manzanillo LNG Project Expected Within Two Weeks

Mexico has been in talks with a half dozen companies about building and supplying a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal at the port of Manzanillo, according to a Reuters News Service report. The country's Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) is expected to open tenders in the first half of next month.

Companies thought to be interested in the project include Chevron, Repsol-YPF, Sempra Energy and Royal Dutch Shell. Shell and Sempra told Reuters that they will review the opportunity.

The plant is expected to cost about $430 million and have capacity of 500 MMcf/d. A CFE spokesman said that the commission is holding talks with interested parties to answer any questions and finalize the tender.

Australia, Bolivia and Peru are considered potential suppliers of LNG to the project, with Peru's Camisea gas field favored by some analysts because of its relative proximity to the regasification terminal. The supplier will be determined as a result of a tender parallel to the plant tender. Later, a third tender is planned for the construction of a pipeline from the regasification plant to the pipeline grid.

The terminal and regasification plant will be operated by Mexico's energy ministry, the CFE and Pemex.

Last month consulting firm Energy Ventures Analysis of Arlington, VA, listed the North American LNG terminal projects it expects will move forward to completion. Of the 20 listed in EVA's "likely" category, three are in Mexico (see NGI, March 27):

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