Recent protests in Yemen will not stop Total-led Yemen liquefied natural gas from reaching full output capacity in the next six months, a spokesman for the company has said.

Yemen LNG commercial and shipping manager Jean-Pierre Cave told a LNG seminar held in Seoul that the company would ship its hundredth cargo in late March, Reuters reported.
“We see no disruption in gas production, and actually we see an increase as our full-capacity

operation will be reached in the next six months or so,” he said on the sidelines of the seminar.
Cave said Yemen LNG is currently at 95% of capacity, with the increase in capacity allowing for more shipments to key buyer South Korea.

The $4.5 billion Yemen LNG project has two production trains with a combined capacity of 6.7 million tons per year and is the largest-ever industrial project in the country, a small non-Opec oil producer that pumps around 290,000 barrels of crude oil per day.

A combined of 20% stake is owned by three Korean firms including state-run Korea Gas. South Korea is the world’s second largest LNG buyer after Japan.

Overall Yemen LNG sales to Asia in 2011 should rise to 57 cargoes from 43 cargoes last year with 44 going to South Korea, Cave said.

He said Yemen LNG supplied 5.6% of South Korea’s LNG imports in 2010 under a mixture of long-term and mid-term deals.

“This (5.6%) share could grow up to 10% from 2011 onwards…Pricing is set until 2014, capped well below current market prices,” he said, referring to long-term contracts with Korean buyers mostly KOGAS, the world’s largest corporate buyer of LNG and the country’s sole wholesaler, Reuters reported.