Congo joins LNG-exporting nations under a new project with Italian energy company ENI


MILAN (AP) — The African nation of Congo became the latest exporter of liquified natural gas on Tuesday as it launched production of the first cargo load a year after Italian energy company ENI launched the Congo LNG project with local partners.

The first cargo ship laden with LNG will head to the Italian regassification plant in the Tuscan city of Piombino in the coming days, ENI said in a statement.

“With the first cargo, the Republic of Congo enters the group of LNG exporting countries, opening up opportunities for economic growth while contributing to the global energy balance,” ENI said.

ENI and it partners shared workforces, know-how and technology “ensuring additional revenues to the country while contributing to Europe’s energy security,” CEO Claudio Descalzi said in a statement.

The project will have an annual capacity of 4.5 billion cubic meters of natural gas, which is used to heat homes and businesses. It is formed when gas is cooled to about -260 F (-162 C) to be stored and shipped safely aboard specially designed vessels.

Europe has been in search of new energy sources since moving to cut off Russian supplies following its full-scale invasion of Ukraine two years ago. Sales of Russian gas abroad have dropped by 40% since the invasion, according to the ISPI think tank.

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