Minister Coric said that he is pleased with the progress and dynamics of the construction work of liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal as planned to be completed by October, when the FSRU ship arrives at the terminal location, which is scheduled to start operating on 1 January 2021. Construction works on the land part of the terminal, consisting of a pier with ancillary facilities and a 4.2 kilometers long gas pipeline, began in April last year and are currently underway. So far, more than 60 % of all construction and mechanical assembly works have been completed. Upon the arrival of the FSRU ship to the terminal location in October, a trial operation and the process for obtaining of the operating license will start.
Last February, Croatian Government adopted a decision on the financing of the first phase of the project for the construction of LNG terminal on the island of Krk. For this purpose, the European Commission (EC) has approved 101.4 million euros in grants, while the state will provide additional 100 million euros from the budget. Up to 50 million euros will be provided during this year or by January 2020 at the latest, while the remaining 50 million will be provided by the end of 2020. These funds will be used for the purchase of a Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU) vessel and the construction of auxiliary facilities and a high-pressure pipeline. The remaining 32.6 million euros will be secured by state-owned power utility HEP and natural gas transmission system operator Plinacro, which should be provided by the end of February. It is expected that the LNG terminal will be put in operation on 1 January 2021. Instead of the original plan to build land terminal with the capacity of 6 billion cubic meters of gas per year, Croatia opted for an intermediate solution with the floating terminal with the annual capacity of 2.6 cubic meters, which could be operational in year and a half or two, because only minor procedures to the gas transportation system is needed due to its smaller capacity and it could be leased under favorable conditions.