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Hunton & Williams represents banks in Freeport LNG financing

LNG Industry,

Hunton & Williams LLP has represented Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI), and a group of commercial banks on a US$4.369 billion senior secured project debt finance, letter of credit and working capital facilities to finance the construction and operation of Train 1 of the Freeport LNG liquefaction and export project.

The Train 1 project will be constructed, operated and owned by Freeport LNG Expansion, L.P. (Freeport LNG), Osaka Gas Co., Ltd. and Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc. Osaka Gas and Chubu Electric, two of Japan’s largest utilities, will offtake and export the full capacity of the Train 1 LNG production under long-term contracts.

The Train 1 facilities are part of a planned three-train LNG production and export facility being developed by Freeport LNG. The Train 1 debt and equity financing transactions closed and funded on 25 November, concurrently with the Freeport LNG Train 2 debt and equity financing transactions. The transactions reportedly represent the largest fully non-recourse project construction financings to have ever occurred.

JBIC is contributing 70% of the Train 1 project debt financing, with the remaining 30% of project debt financing being provided under NEXI insurance cover by Mizuho Bank, Ltd., Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd., Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, Limited, Mitsubishi UFJ Trust and Banking Corporation, and ING Bank N.V.

The proposed three-train LNG production and export terminal facilities, which are an expansion of Freeport LNG’s existing LNG import terminal and regasification facility, are designed to provide an LNG export capacity of approximately 13.2 million tpy.

Adapted from press release by Katie Woodward

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