Gas output at Italy's Adriatic LNG terminal disrupted

FILE PHOTO: A security guard sits behind a security fence at a gate leading into the ExxonMobil PNG Limited operated Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plant at Caution Bay, located on the outskirts of Port Moresby

MILAN (Reuters) - Planned gas production by Italy's Adriatic LNG terminal operator could be reduced because of an unscheduled outage on Thursday, Italian energy group Edison said in a message posted on Italy's specialist GME platform.

The Adriatic LNG terminal operator, whose annual regasification capacity has recently been increased to 9 billion cubic metres a year, is working to resolve the situation, Edison added. It did not give a timeframe for fixing the problem.

A government source told Reuters that the issue seems manageable and should not have a serious impact on gas supply to Italy.

The terminal located in the Adriatic Sea, about 15 km off the Veneto coastline, can cover around 12% of Italy's annual national gas consumption, according to its website.

Adriatic LNG is controlled by ExxonMobil, which owns a stake of 70.7%, with QatarEnergy and Italian gas grid operator Snam owning the rest. The terminal, which became operational in 2009, has a work hub in the Italian city of Rovigo.

Italy's gas storage is nearly full ahead of the winter as it seeks a buffer against potential disruptions of supplies from Russia, on which it has reduced its reliance, Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi said earlier on Thursday.

He also said that Italy should be alert about unexpected technical or operational problems with the country's infrastructure that could jeopardise its energy security.

(Reporting by Francesca Landini and Giuseppe Fonte, editing by Gianluca Semeraro and Keith Weir)