China private group GCL hires CNOOC execs to fast-track gas business – sources
China’s privately owned GCL Group Holding has hired senior officials from state oil and gas major CNOOC to fast-track its burgeoning natural gas business, three senior company officials said. GCL is planning a liquefied natural gas (LNG) export project in the African country of Djibouti and a LNG receiving terminal in east China. reut.rs/2IXguFi Earlier this month GCL hired Ye Yishu, formerly general manager of CNOOC’s global LNG trading, to lead gas trading under its overseas umbrella Poly-GCL Petroleum Group Holdings Ltd, which has trading operations in Beijing and Singapore, the officials said. Ye confirmed his move when contacted by Reuters. Li Feilong, previously executive vice president with China Oilfield Services Ltd (COSL), a subsidiary of CNOOC, also joined Poly-GCL earlier this year as its chief financial officer, the officials said. GCL also hired Wang Jianwen, previously a vice president at CNOOC’s gas and power group, to lead domestic infrastructure investment and gas marketing. Both Li and Wang were not immediately available for comment. Multiple calls to GCL’s main line went unanswered. China’s LNG imports through August this year have risen by about 50 percent from the same time a year ago and the country overtook South Korea as the world’s second-largest importer of the fuel last year. To meet that demand, GCL plans to build a 3-million-tonnes-per-year LNG receiving terminal in Rudong county in east China’s Jiangsu province, next to a similar-sized facility operated by PetroChina. The Rudong terminal, set to start up as early as 2022, will be the second sizeable investment in gas infrastructure led by a private company in China, according to consultancy SIA Energy. In August, piped gas distributor ENN started China’s first private-led import terminal in Zhoushan. Poly-GCL, the group’s majority-owned joint venture with state defence conglomerate Poly Group, last November signed a preliminary pact with the Djibouti government to build a 3-million-tonnes-per-year LNG export facility that using gas that the company is exploring for in southeast Ethiopia. The firm is tapping potential investors and aims for first gas shipment in 2022, said senior industry executives with knowledge of the project. GCL operates three power plants in China which burn around 5.5 billion cubic metres a year of natural gas, supplied by the country’s state energy producers.