Russia's largest LNG project left without Samsung gas carriers due to US sanctions
Photo: DTSS

New US sanctions have put an end to Russia's plans to build ten Samsung Arctic gas carriers for the Arctic LNG-2 plant it is building on the Gyda Peninsula. On Tuesday, the Korean company Samsung Heavy Industries announced that it would stop building blocks and equipment for them, writes Reuters.

In 2020, Samsung Heavy Industries agreed with the Russian side on the construction of 15 gas carriers designed to service the Arctic LNG-2. Construction is not taking place in South Korea, but in Russia at the Zvezda shipbuilding complex in the Primorsky Krai.

Blocks and equipment for five gas carriers were exported to Russia under a special permit from the South Korean government, but the production of the remaining 10 Samsung vessels has been stopped, although the contract has not yet been terminated, a company representative said.

Gas carriers of the Korean SN2366 project are designed for LNG transportation in the conditions of the Arctic Ocean. They have a high ice class of Arc7 (the highest is Arc9). The length of these ships is 300 m, the width is 48.8 m, the cargo capacity is 172,600 cubic meters.

The resource base of Arctic LNG-2 is a gas field located on the Gyda Peninsula. The project envisages the construction of three liquefied gas production lines with a capacity of 6.6 million tons per year each. The total capacity of the plant was planned at the level of 19.8 million tons of LNG and up to 1.6 million tons of gas condensate per year. Participants in the project are the Russian Novatek (60%), as well as the French TotalEnergies, the Chinese CNPC and CNOOC, as well as the Japanese consortium Mitsui and Jogmec (all – 10%). 

On November 2, 2023, the US Department of the Treasury included Arctic LNG-2 in the sanctions list.

On December 21, 2023, media reported that the Russian Novatek – the largest shareholder of Arctic LNG-2 – sent its customers a notice of force majeure regarding the future supply of gas from this plant.

On Monday, the force majeure was announced by the foreign shareholders of the project: French TotalEnergies, Chinese CNPC and CNOOC, as well as a consortium of Japanese Mitsui and OGMEC.