Ophir Opts for Alternative Financing for Fortuna FLNG

Africa’s first deepwater FLNG project situated in Equatorial Guinea, Fortuna FLNG, has been faced with some financial hurdles.

Based on the latest update from its developer Ophir Energy, the talks with a group of Chinese banks on financing the project have taken longer than expected prompting the company to turn to alternative sources of funding.

“Concurrently, Ophir and its partners have therefore also been developing alternative funding sources for the project. These alternative options are now at an advanced stage. Ophir expects to be in a position to select one of these options and to finalize the financing arrangements for the project by mid-December 2017,” the company said.

“Once the financing arrangements have been selected, Ophir will promptly seek approval for the project from its shareholders and the project stakeholders.”

As informed, the final investment decision, based on this sequence of approvals, would be expected to take place during Q1 2018.

“The discussions we have had in recent weeks make us more confident than ever that shareholders will realise significant value from Fortuna,” Nick Cooper, Chief Executive of Ophir, commented.

Ophir has agreed on a twelve-month extension to the Block R licence, in which the project is situated, to the end of December 2018.

The expected total capital expenditure for the integrated project is around USD 2 billion to reach first gas, which will have been achieved by 2020 based on initial projections. Some USD 1.2 billion is expected to be debt financed, with full drawdown by the start of commercial operations.

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