Novatek brings Total into Yamal LNG project

Russia’s natural gas producer, Novatek, has completed the sale its 20% stake of Yamal LNG to French oil and gas group Total .

Novatek says the deal has been concluded through subsidiary, Novatek North-West, and will see Total provide financing for project development.

“Total consideration includes a payment for the 20% participation interest as well as financing for the project through the charter capital of Yamal LNGand disproportionalshareholder loans.”

Yves-Louis Darricarrere, presidentof Total Exploration Production, said he expected strong synergy from combining the experience and technologyof the two Companies.

“Total is very pleased to be given this opportunity to be pioneers in an untapped region. We will work with Novatekto unlock the Yamal peninsula gas potential usingworld-class technology and combiningthe expertise of both companies as we build a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) plant in the area.”

Darricarrere added that the move dovetailed with Total’s long term plans for Russia.

“The decision to participateinthisLNGprojectcomesasanadditiontothe acquisition of asignificant shareof Novatek’scapital andconfirms Total’s long term commitment to Russia.”

Novatek earlier acquired the controllingstake in Yamal LNGfrom organizations associated withGennady Timchenko for$650 million, and also obtained a three-year option to buy another 23.9%. Now Novatek plans to bring foreign shareholders into the project, while retaining a controlling stake. Among the planned investor countries Novatek chief, Leonid Mikhelson, named India and Qatar.

Novatek is taking part in the development of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant at the Yuzho-Tambeiskoye deposit in Yamal, where proven reserves stand at 1.26 trillion cubic meters of gas and 51.6 million tonnes of gas condensate. The LNG plant will have a processing capacity of 15.5 million tonnes a year and up to 1 million tonnes of condensate, with the launch of its first production line planned for 2016.

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