Business Hilights
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Zenith, GTBank, export-credit agencies in talks to bankroll NLNG Train 7

High level facility vote discussion is ongoing between the Nigeria LNG Limited, the operator of Africa’s largest natural gas plant with select banking giants for N10bn loan to finance Train 7 project of the group.

Lead in the financial institutions include Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and Zenith Bank Plc, who are to pull as much as $2bn, leaving the balance for foreign lenders and export-credit agencies.

The Chief Executive Officer, Mr Tony Attah, who spoke with Bloomberg, said the ongoing talks is part of buildup ahead of the December Final Investment Decision (FID) on Train 7 of NLNG which is expected to deepen earnings for the economy alongside with more jobs for while While revealing that the funds would go towards building the gas plant’s seventh train, expected to boost output by 40 per cent, he disclosed that “We have done the financial market pitch to know who has capacity.”

On Wednesday last week, the NLNG moved closer to taking a final investment decision on the project when it named Saipem, Chiyoda Corporation and Daewoo Engineering & Construction Co. Ltd as the successful bidders to build the new plant.

Already, NLNG has appointed GTB and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation as financial advisers for the fund raising that would be a combination of debt and equity.

Industry pundits say the seventh train will cost as much as $7bn to build, with another $3bn going for gas-gathering projects and pipelines needed to feed the new unit.

Business Hilights findings in activities in the gas sector showed that Nigeria is joining nations including the US, Australia and even some African oil economies to plan towards increasing output in condensate gas to help meet rising natural gas demand led by China.

Attah averred that the successful drive of Train 7 project will push Nigeria’s LNG output to reach 30 million tonnes a year in the next five years, from the current 22 million tonnes.