Chile

Chile to import natural gas from Argentina by end of 2018

BUENOS AIRES – Argentina will begin exporting natural gas to neighboring Chile before the end of 2018, the energy ministers of both countries said on Thursday. Chilean companies are in talks to sign import deals and the first flow of gas across the Andes could come in October or November of this year, Chile energy minister Susana Jimenez said in an interview in Argentine town of Bariloche at the G20 Meeting of Energy Ministers. “We see a great opportunity for mutual benefit,” she said. The two South American countries had previously signed deals allowing for the export of gas or electricity in emergency situations, but required that an equivalent amount be re-imported within twelve months. The gas could be used for electricity generation, replacing imports from elsewhere, or to heat homes in areas where families still depend on wood, a source of pollution in the center-south region, Jimenez said. Chile produces little hydrocarbons of its own. The production decline in Argentina came as companies in the country started pulling back on investment, discouraged by sagging profits after the government capped wellhead gas prices. This meant domestic prices were amongst the world’s lowest and gas production subsequently fell to a 16-year low of 113.7 mcm per day in 2014 from a record 143 mcm per day in 2004. Since taking office in December 2015, President Mauricio Macri has sought to loosen labor rules and boost infrastructure to attract investment. Rising output from Vaca Muerta could help the country export more than it imports by 2021, Argentina’s energy minister Juan Jose Aranguren said at a news conference.

BUENOS AIRES – Argentina will begin exporting natural gas to neighboring Chile before the end of 2018, the energy ministers of both countries said on Thursday.
Chilean companies are in talks to sign import deals and the first flow of gas across the Andes could come in October or November of this year, Chile energy minister Susana Jimenez said in an interview in Argentine town of Bariloche at the G20 Meeting of Energy Ministers.
“We see a great opportunity for mutual benefit,” she said.
The two South American countries had previously signed deals allowing for the export of gas or electricity in emergency situations, but required that an equivalent amount be re-imported within twelve months.
The gas could be used for electricity generation, replacing imports from elsewhere, or to heat homes in areas where families still depend on wood, a source of pollution in the center-south region, Jimenez said.
Chile produces little hydrocarbons of its own.
The production decline in Argentina came as companies in the country started pulling back on investment, discouraged by sagging profits after the government capped wellhead gas prices.
This meant domestic prices were amongst the world’s lowest and gas production subsequently fell to a 16-year low of 113.7 mcm per day in 2014 from a record 143 mcm per day in 2004.
Since taking office in December 2015, President Mauricio Macri has sought to loosen labor rules and boost infrastructure to attract investment.
Rising output from Vaca Muerta could help the country export more than it imports by 2021, Argentina’s energy minister Juan Jose Aranguren said at a news conference.