Fourth LNG Carrier for SINOPEC LNG Project Delivered

Chinese shipbuilder Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding delivered the fourth LNG carrier intended for SINOPEC’s LNG project in Australia on September 26.

The vessel, named CESI Tianjin, was ordered by the joint venture between Japan’s Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL), China COSCO Shipping Corporation and China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (SINOPEC).

The CESI Tianjin was ordered in April 2013 as part of an order for six newbuildings.

The new ships will be employed on a long-term charter contract to transport LNG that SINOPEC will purchase from the Australia Pacific LNG Project.

The first vessel, the CESI Gladstone was delivered in October 2016, the second, the CESI Qingdao in January 2017, and the third, the CESI Beihai, in June 2017.

The remaining two are slated to be delivered by 2018, MOL said.

Total consideration for the construction of the six ships was set at approximately USD 1.5 billion. As disclosed earlier, long-term limited recourse debt financing worth USD 1.2 billion was secured for the six ships with a syndicate of banks.

The Australia Pacific LNG project includes the development of Australia Pacific LNG’s substantial coal seam gas resources in the Surat and Bowen Basins, a 530 km transmission pipeline, and a multitrain LNG facility on Curtis Island, near Gladstone.

At the end of August, Australia Pacific LNG  satisfied the final test relating to project financing completion agreements for both processing trains at its LNG Facility on Curtis Island in Queensland.

This means that Australia Pacific LNG shareholders ConocoPhillips, Origin and Sinopec have been released from their obligations under the completion guarantees relating to the USD 8.5 billion project finance facility.

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