Cheniere Energy Partners LP. (AMEX: CQP) announced last night that the company has received approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) “to site, construct and operate facilities for the liquefaction and export of domestically produced natural gas at the Sabine Pass LNG terminal.” The FERC’s order permits the company to build up to four liquefied natural gas plants, called ‘trains,’ at the Sabine Pass terminal.
The export terminal gives natural gas producers hope not only for selling liquefied natural gas to foreign countries, but that the demand will raise prices in the US. At the current price of around $1/thousand cubic feet, domestic natural gas is essentially free. When exported as LNG, the gas currently fetches $15-$16/thousand cubic feet.
Cheniere has long-term contracts for deliveries to begin in late 2015 or early 2016 for the first two trains and 2017/2018 for the second two trains.
Cheniere Energy Partners and its general partner, Cheniere Energy Inc. (AMEX: LNG), are trading near 52-week highs on the FERC announcement.