Qatargas has revealed that Train 5 of the Qatargas 2 project has now started producing liquefied natural gas (LNG), taking the company halfway through its expansion programme.

Train 5, which has an annual production capacity of 7.8 million tonnes, will take the overall LNG production of Qatargas to 25 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) by the end of 2009.

The output of LNG from Train 5 also takes Qatargas another step closer to its ambitious production goal for the years ahead.

Faisal M. Al Suwaidi, CEO and Vice Chairman of Qatargas, was buoyant as he said, “This is truly a remarkable achievement for Qatargas 2 and I would like to congratulate and thank all those who have made this possible.”

“The production of LNG in Train 5 takes us one step closer to Qatar’s target of producing 77 million tonnes of LNG per annum by the end of this decade. We are greatly proud to be able to contribute to this ambitious vision.”

Al Suwaidi added, “We have entered into a new phase in our journey towards becoming the world’s premier LNG Company. Our task now is to ensure that the new trains operate flawlessly and that we meet our customers’ expectations with regard to a secure and reliable supply of LNG for the long term, as we have been doing with Qatargas 1 for many years.”

Qatargas pioneered LNG production in Qatar in late 1996. The Company began operations as a three train LNG project with a total production of six mtpa of LNG. The production capacity was increased to nearly ten mtpa following the completion of a debottlenecking project in 2005.

In addition to Trains 4 and 5, Qatargas 3 Train 6 is expected to come online in 2010 while Qatargas 4 Train 7 is planned for start-up by the end of the decade. This will bring the overall production capacity of Qatargas to 42 mtpa by the end of next year