GDF SUEZ to become a U.S. LNG exporter, with the Cameron LNG project
GDF SUEZ announces the signing of a joint venture agreement with Sempra Energy, Mitsubishi and Mitsui for the development, financing and construction of the natural gas liquefaction project of Cameron LNG, a unit of Sempra Energy, in Louisiana.
Located at the site of the existing Sempra Energy LNG terminal in Hackberry, the facility will have 3 liquefaction trains with a capacity of 12 million tons of liquefied natural gas (LNG) per annum and will be operated by Cameron LNG.
Under this joint venture agreement, GDF SUEZ, Mitsubishi and Mitsui will each acquire a 16.6% equity stake in the existing terminal and in the liquefaction project, with Sempra Energy retaining a 50.2% position.
Announced last year, GDF SUEZ has also signed with Sempra Energy a 20-year liquefaction service agreement. GDF SUEZ, Mitsubishi and Mitsui have subscribed the full capacity of the three-train facility. GDF SUEZ will thus have access to a capacity of 4 Mtpa of LNG, which will be exported to the Group’s LNG markets.
Jean-Marie Dauger, Executive Vice President of GDF SUEZ in charge of the Global Gas & LNG Business Line declared : “By joining the Cameron LNG project alongside strong and experienced partners, GDF SUEZ, a world leader in LNG, intends to make a decisive contribution to the emergence of a new source of LNG in the United States. The Cameron LNG project will serve to expand and diversify the Group’s LNG portfolio and increase its flexibility for supplying existing or future markets in high growth areas. ”
The tolling and joint venture agreements are subject to a final investment decision by each party, to final permit authorizations, and to securing financing commitments, all of which are expected by early 2014, along with customary conditions precedent. The new LNG plant is expected to start operations in late 2017. Last year, Cameron LNG obtained approval from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to export up to 12 Mtpa of domestically produced LNG to all current and future countries with which the United States has signed a Free Trade Agreement(1).
GDF SUEZ is one of the world’s leading LNG players and Europe’s largest LNG importer. Its LNG portfolio of 16 Mtpa, coming from six countries, is the third largest in the world. It operates a fleet of 17 LNG carriers and has a significant presence in regasification terminals throughout the world.
(1) Authorization to export LNG to countries with which the U.S. does not have a Free Trade Agreement was requested and is pending review by the DOE. To date, only one LNG project in the United States has obtained all US export authorizations.
GDF SUEZ develops its businesses (electricity, natural gas, services) around a model based on responsible growth to take up today’s major energy and environmental challenges: meeting energy needs, ensuring the security of supply, fighting against climate change and maximizing the use of resources. The Group provides highly efficient and innovative solutions to individuals, cities and businesses by relying on diversified gas-supply sources, flexible and low-emission power generation as well as unique expertise in four key sectors: liquefied natural gas, energy efficiency services, independent power production and environmental services. GDF SUEZ employs 219,300 people worldwide and achieved revenues of €97 billion in 2012. The Group is listed on the Paris, Brussels and Luxembourg stock exchanges and is represented in the main international indices: CAC 40, BEL 20, DJ Euro Stoxx 50, Euronext 100, FTSE Eurotop 100, MSCI Europe, ASPI Eurozone, Vigeo World 120, Vigeo Europe 120 and Vigeo France 20.