Canada’s contender to start Atlantic coast liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports announced Monday that it has secured an open door to ask for increased financial help from the German government in exchange for a supply commitment.

Pieridae Energy Ltd. reported receiving confirmation of “eligibility in principle” for a German loan guarantee of up to US$1.5 billion to cover costs of gas supplies for its proposed Goldboro LNG terminal in Nova Scotia.

The potential help for drilling would be an addition to up to US$3 billion in “prospective” terminal construction loan guarantees which are also being sought from the German government, said Pieridae.

The aid would go into supply development in Alberta and British Columbia. Canadian East Coast offshore production is winding down, while provincial bans against fracking in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick have ruled nearby shale supplies off limits.

The gas supply and terminal construction aid packages would both be conditional on the Nova Scotia project making 20-year commitments to supply German gas markets, the company said. “The terms and conditions of both guarantees are yet to be negotiated in the context of an overall project financing,” added Pieridae.

The Goldboro LNG sponsor continues to work on closing a takeover of Calgary gas producer Ikkuma Resources Corp., obtaining a Nova Scotia terminal construction permit, and securing pipeline service across Canada and the United States.