Italian gas company Snam is planning to invest €1bn ($1.09bn) in a new liquefied natural gas (LNG) offshore terminal, reports Reuters.
Located near Ravenna, the new floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) will complement the existing LNG terminal in Tuscany.
It is aimed at reducing dependence on Russia and other conventional suppliers and boosting Italy’s capacity to import gas.
Snam CEO Stefano Venier said: “To increase energy security for Italy we decided last year, together with the government, to increase the country’s LNG import capacity to have more flexibility and diversify energy supplies.”
Called FSRU BW Singapore, the regasification unit will have an annual capacity of 5 billion cubic metres (bcm) of gas.
It is slated to begin commercial operations by the end of 2024 or early 2025.
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Venier expects that Italy’s overall gas consumption will drop to 62–64bcm this year from 68bcm in 2022, due to a reduction in Russian supply, moderate winters, and soaring energy costs.
According to Venier, the current unrest in the Middle East is not likely to have a short-term effect on Italy’s energy security.
However, in the medium run, it may hold down the development of the Leviathan gas field offshore Israel and pose a threat to Europe’s gas supply.
FSRU BW Singapore will be moored approximately 8.5km off the coast of Ravenna, where Snam is currently preparing an offshore platform.
Pipes are also being laid to connect the FSRU to the Italian gas grid.
In a separate statement, Snam said it has signed agreements for works pertaining to the setting up and connecting of FSRU BW Singapore.
More than 1,200 workers will be engaged at the peak of operations, including more than 100 suppliers from the Emilia Romagna Region and the province of Ravenna.
Local businesses in the Ravenna region will be awarded contracts worth more than €300m, Snam added.