Natural Gas Development Minister Rich Coleman meets with Japan Petroleum Exploration Company president Osamu Watanabe in Tokyo last week.

Japan wooed as B.C. LNG customer

Natural Gas Minister Rich Coleman tours Tokyo head offices after Japanese ambassador warns B.C. risks losing world's biggest customer

After a warning from Japan’s ambassador to Canada that the window is closing for the world’s largest customer of liquefied natural gas, Natural Gas Development Minister Rich Coleman has completed a sales trip to Tokyo.

Coleman met with Japanese government officials and major industrial players including Japan Petroleum Exploration Company Ltd. (JAPEX), a partner in the Pacific Northwest LNG project proposed for Prince Rupert.

Another stop was at Mitsubishi Corp., a partner in the LNG Canada project with Shell, PetroChina and Korea Gas with an export terminal proposed near Kitimat. Mitsubishi has also invested $2.9 billion in gas development in the Montney shale formation near Dawson Creek.

Japan’s official warning came after federal Environment Minister Catharine McKenna delayed by another three months a decision on its environmental permit for Pacific Northwest LNG’s terminal at Lelu Island. The permit is one of the last conditions specified by Malaysian state company Petronas and its partners, but the process has dragged on twice as long as the original one-year estimate.

“The global LNG market has changed drastically from a seller’s market to a buyers’, and competition among LNG suppliers is increasing,” Japanese Ambassador Kenjiro Monji said in a letter to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency.

“As LNG exports are usually based on long-term contracts, should Canada miss a window in demand for LNG, the next opportunity may be 10 or 20 years in the future.”

B.C. has 20 LNG export proposals, but slow approvals and protests have delayed the B.C. industry as the U.S. and other countries have moved ahead.

One vote of confidence came in late March, when Exxon Mobil applied to extend its LNG export licence from 25 to 40 years. Exxon Mobil and its Canadian subsidiary Imperial Oil have proposed an export facility based either at Kitimat or Prince Rupert.

 

Just Posted

Candidate hopefuls emerge for upcoming Sooke byelection

Three former councillors considering run

Periods of rain in Wednesday’s forecast

Plus a look ahead at your weekend forecast

Sooke cougar sighting unconfirmed

Boy had a close encounter with the big cat

Victoria car show’s ferry event a highlight for arriving hot-rodders

Grand opening event one of several planned for Northwest Deuce Days

VIDEO: Plant-based burgers may not be as healthy as they seem

Both the Impossible and Beyond Burger have more saturated fat than beef burgers

Survivor of near-drowning in B.C. lake viewing life through new eyes

“If I died that day, the baby wouldn’t know his dad,” said 31-year-old Mariano Santander-Melo.

LETTER: A great asset to the community

Lorien Arnold worked tirelessly to help at the Scouts jamboree, reader writes.

‘Beyond the call’: Teen in police custody gets birthday surprise by B.C. Mountie

Unusual celebration started when Staff Sgt. Paul Vadik went to visit the teen in his Coquitlam cell

Thunderstorms forecast across B.C.

Environment Canada has issued a thunderstorm watch for B.C.’s central Interior

Driver who killed B.C. motorcyclist receives absolute discharge

Chase family speechless following decision by BC Review Board

Lower gas prices slow annual inflation rate to Bank of Canada’s 2% bull’s-eye

Prices showed strength in other areas — led by a 17.3 per cent increase in the cost of fresh vegetables

B.C. moves to preserve 54 of its biggest, oldest trees

Fir, cedar, spruce, pine, yew set aside from logging

Report of dead body in B.C. park actually headless sex doll

This discovery, made at Manning Park on July 10, led police to uncovering two other sex mannequins

Most Read