Dutch energy infrastructure company VTTI and Norwegian owner and operator of LNG carriers and FSRUs Höegh LNG have signed an agreement to study options to develop and operate the FSRU-based Zeeland Energy Terminal in the Vlissingen port area in the Netherlands.

Expected to become operational in the second half of 2027, the terminal will be based on an FSRU, which in time, plans to transition from the import of LNG to hydrogen.

The facility will be connected to one of the largest industrial clusters in the Netherlands and to the Dutch and European gas pipeline network and, sequentially, the hydrogen backbone, VTTI said.

The aim of the Zeeland Energy Terminal is to contribute to the security and affordability of gas supply for the Netherlands and other parts of Europe by increasing its natural gas capacity with LNG importation.

The facility will have an annual throughput capacity of up to 7.5 billion cubic meters, which corresponds to around 25% of the current total average gas consumption in the Netherlands.

VTTI and Höegh LNG will set up a 50-50% joint venture for the LNG import facility which will utilize floating infrastructure in the form of an FSRU allowing for sustainable delivery of natural gas, with limited environmental impact and a short construction timeline.

The project will be developed under a ‘Rijkscöordinatieregeling’, a decision-making process coordinated by the Dutch government for energy projects of national importance. The public participation phase, part of the first stage in this procedure, is scheduled to begin in the first quarter of 2024.

Furthermore, a dialogue with interested market parties is ongoing, and the project team will commence an open season during the first half of 2024, to gauge further market interest in its regasification capacity, VTTI stated.