Oil and gas production started in Yemen in 1986 with production levels remaining within the region of 300,000 barrels per day in 2010. The country is likely to continue to rely on its natural resources to provide for its population of over 22 million inhabitants.
As the country’s largest-ever industrial investment (budgeted around US$ 4.5 billion), the decision to launch the Yemen LNG project in August 2005 was an important milestone for both the Government of Yemen and the Yemen LNG shareholders.
The location of Yemen is strategically advantageous allowing accessibility to all LNG markets, both in the Asia Pacific basin as well as to expanding markets on either side of the Atlantic. The proven gas reserves are sufficient to produce and export 6.7 million metric tonnes of LNG per annum (mmtpa) for at least the next 20 years to its long-term customers in the North American and South Korean markets and potentially also to new customers in the future.
Yemen LNG made its first LNG cargo export in November 2009
The reserves within the Marib area which are currently dedicated to the project include 9.15 trillion cubic feet (TCF) of proven reserves with 1TCF allocated for use in the domestic market, and an additional 0.7 TCF of probable reserves. The domestic gas will be transported through a spur line to Ma’abar which is centrally located in a mountainous region of the country.
Yemen LNG is providing an opportunity for Yemeni citizens to develop a range of specialised skills in engineering and business disciplines enhancing opportunities for local investors to expand and compete at an international level.
The Yemen LNG chain comprises new and existing upstream gas processing facilities including a 25 km, 20-inch transfer line linking the two gas processing units in the gas fields of block 18 in Marib; a 320km, 38-inch new main pipeline, which is connecting the gas processing facilities to the new liquefaction facilities in Balhaf, and a spur line to transport domestic gas to the Ma’bar area in central Yemen.