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Chadbourne represents Corpus Christi lenders

LNG Industry,

Law firm Chadbourne & Parke LLP represented the lenders in connection with the US$11.5 billion senior debt financing for the Corpus Christi LNG project.

The project, when fully constructed, is expected to comprise three liquefaction trains with expected aggregate nominal production capacity of approximately 13.5 million tpy, three full-containment LNG storage tanks with capacity of approximately 10.1 billion ft3, two LNG carrier docks and a 22 mile, 48 in. natural gas supply pipeline. The estimated total capital cost of the project is US$15.4 billion.

Debt facility

The debt facility is being provided by a syndicate of 31 commercial banks and other financial institutions. Approximately US$3.1 billion of equity will be provided by affiliates of Cheniere Energy. The rest of the project's capital cost will be funded from internal cash generation.

Commenting on the contract, Noam Ayali, an energy project finance partner, said: "Chadbourne has been privileged to have worked on three out of the four LNG liquefaction export projects in the US that have tapped external debt financing in the commercial banks, export credit agencies, and institutional investors markets.

"We are delighted to have had another opportunity to work with Cheniere Energy Inc. and Société Générale, its financial advisor, following the successful Sabine Pass LNG transaction, and to have advised the lenders to the Corpus Christi LNG project on this groundbreaking transaction."

LNG expertise

Partner Ben Koenigsberg added: "Leveraging our natural gas and LNG infrastructure expertise, and our understanding of lenders' requirements in these transactions were instrumental to achieving successful closing. The transaction required contributions from numerous practice groups throughout the firm and we were all fortunate to have had the opportunity to represent the multitude of financial institutions that will support the Corpus Christi LNG project."

Ayali and Koenigsberg led the Chadbourne team working on the project.

In addition to the Corpus Christi LNG project, Chadbourne has served as lenders' counsel on the financing of the first four trains of the Sabine Pass LNG project, and the financing of Train 2 and Train 3 of the Freeport LNG project. The firm is currently acting as counsel in connection with ongoing financing transactions for other active LNG liquefaction export projects.

Adapted from press release by Katie Woodward

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