Centrica agrees further Interconnector export sales

Centrica, EnTrade and DELTA today announced agreement on a number of further contracts for gas deliveries to the Netherlands through the UK-Continent Interconnector pipeline.

Under the agreements, Centrica, through its subsidiary British Gas Trading, will sell a total of around 0.7 billion cubic metres per annum (bcm/a) to EnTrade – a trading joint venture between PNEM and MEGA - and DELTA over a period of 8 years.

Deliveries should start in October 1998, when the Interconnector is due to open, and will be drawn from Centrica's portfolio of UK continental shelf reserves and gas purchase contracts.

In order to make these sales, British Gas Trading will make use of its contractual rights to transportation capacity in the Interconnector, including capacity recently obtained via an assignment from National Power.

The buyers intend to re-sell the gas to large consumers in their respective supply areas in the Southern Netherlands, including cogeneration projects in which they or related companies have an equity interest.

Significantly, the parties have agreed to investigate other fields of co-operation such as shorter term gas trading deals, optimal use of the companies' respective transportation capacities and other future projects of mutual benefit.

Roy Gardner, Chief Executive, Centrica, said: "I am very pleased that we have been able to build on our relationships with the buyers to realise significant further sales – not to mention the scope for wider co-operation in the future."

Kees Wiechers, speaking for EnTrade, said: "These contracts provide a solid platform for the development of PNEM and MEGA's natural gas business, on the basis of competitively priced UK supplies."

"The contracts with Centrica will allow us to make good use of our transportation investments and further develop our gas business in Zeeland Province," said Henk de Kraa, spokesman for DELTA.