Qatar Petroleum (QP) will merge the activities of RasGas and Qatargas into a single entity named Qatargas that will operate all of Qatar’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) ventures.

The combined Qatargas entity will be the world’s largest LNG supplier. Qatargas says it has a capacity of 42 million tonnes a-year and Rasgas has a capacity of 37m t/y.

“The integration aims to create a truly unique global energy operator in terms of size, service and reliability,” said Saad Sherida al-Kaabi, president and CEO of Qatar Petroleum at a press conference held in Doha on 11 December. “We will merge the distinctive resources and capabilities of Qatargas and RasGas to create even higher value for our stakeholders, and enhance our competitive position.”

The integration process is to start immediately and is expected to be completed within one year. Qatar Petroleum said that the operations of both Qatargas and Rasgas will not be impacted at all by the integration and priority will be given to “ensuring a safe, seamless and risk-free business continuity”.

Qatargas, which was established in 1984, has seven LNG trains. Four of these trains are the largest in the world – known as mega-trains – each with a production capacity of 7.8 t/y. Its other assets include the Laffan Refinery, a dedicated fleet of ships, a regasification terminal, and liaison offices in Japan and China. 

Its main shareholder is Qatar Petroleum. The other shareholders are France’s Total, the US’ ExxonMobil, Japan’s Mitsui & Company, Japan’s Marubeni Corporation, the US’ ConocoPhillips, UK/Dutch Shell, Japan’s Idemitsu Kosan Company, and Japan’s Cosmo Oil Company.

Established in 2001 as a 70:30 joint venture between QP and ExxonMobil, Rasgas oversees and manages all the operations associated with seven LNG trains, two sales gas production facilities, two helium production facilities, and major shipping contracts and global commercial partnerships. Although its primary function is exporting LNG, it also provides sales gas to the domestic market by pipeline.

QP has been rationalising its operations amid low energy prices. According to a report by the Washington-based World Bank in August, it has cut 1,000 jobs since energy prices began to decline in late 2014.

Abu Dhabi has also been merging the activities of its energy companies. In October, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) said it will combine offshore oil producers Abu Dhabi Marine Operating Company (ADMA-OPCO) and Zakum Development Company (Zadco) as one combined entity.