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LNG imports in jeopardy?

NEW DELHI : India's $22b-deal to import five million tonnes of liquefied natural gas from Iran is in trouble after the United States company, General Electric, reportedly refused supply of crucial equipment needed to take the gas to Tehran.

GE has refused to supply compressors, a crucial link in converting natural gas into liquid for transportation in ships, to Iran, industry sources said.

German firm Linde had also refused liquefaction technology to Iran.

As such Iran cannot access commercially proven LNG liquefaction technologies thanks to U.S. sanctions on Tehran. The only two commercially proven technologies are of U.S. origin and the sanctions preclude U.S.-based firms to associate with projects in Iran. Sources said Iran was banking on yet to be commercially tested "MFC" process of Linde and "Liquefin" process of Axens (a wholly owned subsidiary of IFP of France) for liquefaction of natural gas produced from gigantic South Pars fields in the Persian Gulf.

PTI

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