New Omani owners looking to expand Shell’s former LPG operations
KUALA LUMPUR, May 9 – Oman’s National Gas Company (NGC) is looking at possibly expanding Shell’s west Malaysian LPG (liquified petroleum gas) distribution operations which it bought today for an undisclosed sum.
NGC said that it would be looking at introducing new applications and retail methods for the LPG operations in Malaysia.
“There will be no reductions, if anything it will be an expansion,” said NGC Chairman Sheikh Abdulla Suleiman Hamed Al-Harthy at a press conference following the signing of the sales and purchase agreement with Shell Malaysia Trading here.
He declined however to reveal the amount it paid for the LPG assets citing non-disclosure agreements with Shell.
He added that while this was NGC’s first investment in Malaysia, the company was on the lookout for other LPG opportunities in the country.
NGC CEO Goutam Sen said that Shell’s LPG operations currently distributed 22,000-25,000 tonnes of LPG per month which represents about 22 per cent of the Malaysian market.
While most of the LPG is used by households, NGC, which has been selling industrial gas in Malaysia for the past two years, would be looking to expand its usage in the industrial sector.
Goutem said that 80-85 per cent of the LPG gas is currently sourced from the Shell refinery in Port Dickson and NGC has signed a long term contract with Shell.
Shell Malaysia managing director Azman Ismail said in his speech following the signing of the sales agreement that the divestment of the LPG business would not affect its other downstream businesses in the country.
He added that NGC had submitted the most competitive bid and the deal is still pending regulatory approval as any company looking to retail petroleum products needs to obtain a licence.
Goutem said that the licence is expected to be approved within the next few months.
According to its website, NGC operates the largest LPG infrastructure and has the highest consumer base in Oman.
Besides LPG, cylinder and bulk gas supply and installation, NGC is also involved in synthetic natural gas, cutting gas and other energy related services and products.