PARIS, Feb. 5 (UPI) -- French energy company GDF Suez said Wednesday parking a massive regasification unit off of Uruguay's coast would help the country wean itself from oil.
GDF Suez said it joined project partner, Japanese trading company Marubeni Corp., in chartering a floating storage and regasification unit for its LNG import terminal in Uruguay.
GDF Suez said the offshore platform will be the largest of its kind once it's commissioned in late 2016. It will take up about 4 acres, be able to store 9 million cubic feet of natural gas and turn 350 million cubic feet of LNG into gas each day.
"The project will also reduce the proportion of imported oil in the country's energy supply," the French company said in a statement Wednesday. "Development of LNG regasification capacity forms part of Uruguay's Energy Policy 2005-30 and has been identified as a priority by the government."
GDF said a regasification vessel, GDF Suez Neptune, will move to the terminal in Uruguay in the interim so commercial operations can begin there by 2015.