Bermuda-based liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipping company Golar has announced its agreement with BP for the charter of a floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) vessel to service the Greater Tortue Ahmeyim project in West Africa.

Golar subsidiary Gimi MS signed the agreement, which is a 20-year lease and operate agreement (LOA) for the FLNG Gimi unit. The vessel is expected to start production in 2022 and is designed to produce an average of approximately 2.5 million tonnes of LNG per year.

The FLNG Gimi will liquefy gas as part of the first phase of BP’s Greater Tortue Ahmeyim project and will be located at “an innovative nearshore hub” on the Mauritania and Senegal maritime border. The total gas reserves in the field are estimated to be around 15 trillion cubic feet.

Construction of the FLNG Gimi unit is expected to cost approximately $1.3bn, excluding financing costs.

In addition to its entry into the LOA with BP, Gimi MS has entered into a subscription agreement with First FLNG Holdings, a subsidiary of Singaporean offshore and marine group Keppel. This agreement is in respect of First FLNG Holdings’ participation in a 30% share of FLNG Gimi.

Golar CEO Iain Ross said: “This landmark 20-year agreement with BP, which is Golar’s second FLNG tolling agreement, is the culmination of a lot of hard work and commitment from the project and commercial teams that commenced late 2017.

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“Golar is delighted to have the opportunity to demonstrate the safe and reliable operation, quality and value of its FLNG offering to such a world class energy company as BP and looks forward to safely delivering and building on this long-term relationship over the decades ahead”.