VILNIUS, Jan 25 (Reuters) - Lithuanian fertilizer producer Achema, the largest consumer of natural gas in the Baltics, has signed a deal with Norway’s Statoil for the supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG), Lithuania’s prime minister said on Monday.
Privately-owned Achema, which consumed 1.3 billion cubic meters of gas in 2014, was looking at LNG as an alternative supply after its long-term contract with Russia’s Gazprom ran out last year.
“We are happy that such a good contract was signed, according to our information,” Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius told LRT public television.
First supplies of LNG to Achema will be delivered by the end of the first quarter of 2016, and will be followed by more deliveries during the summer, Butkevicius said.
A spokeswoman for Achema declined to comment.
Achema will be only the second user of Lithuania’s LNG import facility, inaugurated in 2014 as the country sought to reduce its dependence on Gazprom’s monopoly pipeline supplies.
In 2014, Lithuania’s government ordered state-owned Litgas to sign a supply deal with Statoil and guarantee a base load for the terminal. The deal was amended this year, to lower the gas import price to a level closer to that offered by Gazprom. (Reporting by Andrius Sytas, editing by Terje Solsvik)