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Petrobras LNG terminal restart delayed to 27 Nov

6 Nov 2017, 2.36 pm GMT

Petrobras LNG terminal restart delayed to 27 Nov

Sao Paulo, 6 November (Argus) — Conclusion of scheduled maintenance of Petrobras' Pecem LNG regasification terminal was pushed back to 27 November from 7 November, the Brazilian state-controlled oil company told Argus.

Petrobras said a 22-day strike at the Navantia shipyard in Spain, which ended on 27 October, delayed the maintenance of the floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) Golar Winter.

As a result of the delays, the LNG terminal, which went off line on 18 September, is not expected to be brought back on until 27 November.

The delay comes as Brazil maximizes thermoelectric dispatch in an effort to slow a decline in hydroelectric reservoirs caused by an intense drought.

Brazil's electricity sector monitoring committee (CMSE) said it will keep high-cost thermoelectric plants on stream, despite recent improvements in the outlook for rain.

In its 3 November meeting, the CMSE said all power plants with fuel costs of up to R702.50/MWh ($212.24/MWh) will remain in operation, despite a 9pc decline in spot market prices following spring rains that started to reach some regions of the country.

A mines and energy ministry spokesperson said despite the increase in precipitation the government remains cautious with respect to reservoirs.

Brazil's national systems operator (ONS) highlighted in its 3 November weekly meeting that a cold front is forecast to reach southern and southeastern Brazil, which will bring light rain to key river basins.

The ONS is now projecting that rainfall will reach 132pc of its historical average in the southern grid system and 98pc in the southeast/center-west grid.

If confirmed, hydroelectric reservoirs in the southeast/center-west grid will end the month of November at 18pc of capacity, up slightly from 17.7pc on 1 November.

Reservoirs in the southern grid are seen rising to 56.1pc by the end of the month, up from 49.1pc on 1 November.

Despite the improved outlook in the southern and southeastern grids, precipitation in the northeastern grid is still forecast to reach just 30pc of its historical average this month.

Reservoirs in the northeastern region, where the Pecem terminal is located, are expected to fall to 3.9pc of capacity by the end of the month from 5.9pc on 1 November.

The ONS said the 170MW TermoCeara thermoelectric plant will continue to operate on diesel this month. The plant can also use natural gas.

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