Fortuna FLNG project partners signed an umbrella agreement that establishes the full legal and fiscal framework for what is claimed to be Africa’s first deepwater FLNG project.
The UA has been signed between Equatorial Guinea, Ophir Holdings & Ventures, a unit of Ophir Energy, OneLNG, a joint venture between Golar LNG and Schlumberger, and La Compañía Nacional De Petróleos De Guinea Ecuatorial (GEPetrol).
According to a joint statement, the UA reconfirms the participation rights of GEPetrol as partners for 20 percent of the upstream portion of the project, and for a future potential participation of up to 30 percent ownership of the midstream FLNG vessel by the Republic of Equatorial Guinea or a designated state company.
The agreement was also one of key milestones leading to the final investment decision (FID) for the Fortuna FLNG project that is still on schedule for mid-2017 with first production expected in mid-2020.
Three other milestones required for the FID to be taken are the award of construction contracts for the upstream and midstream vessel, the completion of the project finance facility and a decision on the amount of gas to be termed at FID and signature of resulting LNG SPAs.
Golar LNG added that the award of construction contracts is on schedule. Term sheets have been agreed with a consortium of China-based lenders with negotiations now in the final documentation stage.
In the coming weeks, the partners are also expected to put the 2.5 mtpa production under contract.
The expected total capital expenditure for the integrated project is approximately $2 billion to reach first gas.
Speaking of the agreement, Nick Cooper, Ophir’s CEO said “the remaining milestones of the construction contract awards, the finalization of debt and the LNG offtake are as advanced as we had wanted them to be at this stage. The Fortuna FLNG project, therefore, remains firmly on schedule for an FID by mid-year.”