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Second-Wave U.S. LNG Exporter Flexes Muscle With Third Contract

Venture Global LNG Inc. took another step toward becoming the first among the second wave of companies vying to ship liquefied natural gas from U.S. shores.

Portugal’s Galp Energia SGPS SA has signed a 20-year deal to buy 1 million tons of LNG annually from Venture Global’s proposed Calcasieu Pass terminal, according to a statement. The facility may begin exporting gas from Louisiana in 2022, pending a final investment decision.

With the latest deal, Venture Global now has contracts for half of the terminal’s planned capacity. The company already has agreements with Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Edison SpA that total 4 million tons a year, giving Venture Global an advantage over competitors like Tellurian Inc. and Texas LNG LLC, which have yet to sign binding long-term agreements.

The race is on for companies aiming to ship U.S. shale gas overseas in the next decade. They’re part of the so-called second wave of American exporters, coming after developers like Cheniere Energy Inc. and Dominion Energy Inc., which already have terminals operating. As record gas production puts the U.S. on course to rival Qatar and Australia for global LNG dominance in the next five years, the first movers will have a competitive advantage.

 Venture Global also aims to build an export project in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana. The two facilities together will produce 30 million tons a year.

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May 3, 2018