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Gimi MS Corp. receives US$700 million underwritten financing commitment

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LNG Industry,

Golar LNG Ltd has announced that, further to the announcement made on 26 February with regards to the BP Tortue project, Gimi MS Corp. – a 70% owned subsidiary of Golar – has received a firm US$700 million underwritten financing commitment for the Gimi floating LNG (FLNG) unit.

According to the statement, Gimi will service the 20-year Tortue contract with BP due to commence in 2022. Available during construction, the financing has a tenor of seven years post COD, and a 12-year amortisation profile. Golar claims that Clifford Capital Pte. Ltd, ING Bank N.V., Natixis and ABN Amro Bank N.V. acted as facility underwriters.

Concurrent with receipt of the financing commitment, First FLNG Holdings Pte. Ltd (FFH) subscribed to 30% of the total issued ordinary share capital of Gimi MS. FFH is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Keppel Corp. Ltd held through Keppel Capital Holdings Pte Ltd. Golar claims that Gimi MS also issued Keppel Shipyard with a final notice to proceed with conversion works on the FLNG unit that had been initiated under the limited notice to proceed in December last year.

LNG Hrvatska d.o.o. – the project developers of the Croatian FSRU facility – have also reportedly issued Golar with a notice to proceed with the conversion and subsequent purchase of the Golar Viking LNG carrier that was constructed in 2005. According to the statement, conversion CAPEX will largely be funded by stage payments from LNG Hrvatska under the agreement. Golar claims that Hudong has been selected as the yard to carry out the necessary conversion works. It is expected that CSSC Leasing, an affiliate company of the yard, meanwhile, will provide both conversion financing and bridging finance for the current vessel facility between yard entry, expected in 1Q20, and sale to LNG Hrvatska for €159.6 million upon completion. In addition to this, Golar will also receive an annual fee to operate the FSRU for a 10-year period.

In the statement, Golar claims that it has also received agreement from lenders of the FSRU Golar Tundra, subject to documentation, to extend the June 2019 maturing facility to June 2021. Documentation of the Gimi and Tundra facilities is now underway. Having agreed a term sheet, good progress has also reportedly been made with respect to refinancing the December 2019 maturing LNG carrier Golar Arctic facility.

CEO Iain Ross said: “In line with guidance provided in the last quarterly earnings announcement Golar continues to make progress in line with expectations. The company looks forward to providing further details when it reports its 1Q19 results next month.”

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