Yemen LNG halts production as fighting worsens
Fighters have seized ports outside the city of Balhaf near Yemen's LNG plant
Yemen has halted production and exports from the country’s liquefied natural gas plant as security in the country deteriorates.
Yemen LNG Co. declared force majeure, which means it cannot meet its contractual obligations in the current circumstances, Bloomberg reported.
“Due to further degradation of the security situation in the vicinity of Balhaf, Yemen LNG has decided to stop all LNG producing and exporting operations and start evacuation of the site personnel,” the company said in a statement.“The plant will remain in a preservation mode", it added.
Near the plant, posts outside the city of Balhaf in southeastern Yemen, have been seized by fighters, accoridng to witness accounts.
Yemen LNG has three long-term contracts for gas sales with France's GDF Suez, Korea Gas and Total. The plant processes and exports gas from the Marib area and has two trains with a total capacity of 6.7mn metric tons a year.
Total, one of the major oil operator in Yemen, with a stake of almost 40% stake of its LNG plant, said in a statement it decided to further reduce staff and put the plant into preservation mode until the situation improves to allow operations to resume.Only essential staff remain on site with all expatriates being evacuated.
On 1st of April, Norwegian oil and gas operator DNO also suspended production in the war-torn country and moved all of its expat workers to Dubai.
DNO, 42.8% owned by RAK Petroleum, operates Block 32 and Block 43 situated east of the capital Sana'a now in control of Houthi rebels.