Taiwan’s state-run CPC is planning to invest US$6.44 billion in its natural gas business over the next six years, the Taipei Times reported. Company chairman Chen Chin-te said the majority of the funds would go to building a third LNG terminal on the island and for infrastructure.
The new terminal will be located at Taoyuan. It will have an estimated annual capacity of 3 million tonnes and is planned to launch in 2023. About half the money allocated will go to its construction and the renovation of existing facilities there and to reduce air pollution.
“We expect the terminal to meet demand for natural gas in northern Taiwan,” Chen said. Renovations at Taoyuan have been stalled since 2006, as local residents remain concerned about pollution and are pressing for the facility’s relocation.
In addition, CPC plans to enlarge its gas plant at Taichung and expand its pipeline network in the area. State utilities provider Taiwan Power is planning to convert its coal-fired generator in Taichung to gas by 2025. Taipower wants to build its own LNG facilities at Taichung, however.
CPC and Taipower’s plans are both part of the effort to make the island nuclear-free by 2025. CPC still requires the approval of the Economic Affairs Ministry and the Executive Yuan, the country’s highest executive body, before it can proceed with its plan. CPC also said that it is seeking a partner for the manufacture of styrene and isononyl alcohol.
CPC also announced separate plans for land reclamation at the port of Kaohsiung to create a new storage centre by 2024. There are more than 300 storage tanks at the facility already. That project will cost US$1.73 billion.
On February 11, a 5.6 magnitude earthquake struck Tainan, not far to the north of Kaohsiung. Its strength reached a magnitude of 3-4 at Kaohsiung, but did not disrupt operations by CPC, FocusTaiwan reported. About 50,000 households lost power as a result of the quake, owing to damage to transformers, but Taipower’s wind farm and solar panels were unharmed. Just over a year earlier, on February 6, 2016, a quake centred in Kaohsiung killed 117.