EIG chief executive R Blair Thomas.Photo: EIG Image used for illustrative purpose only.
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$2.15 billion deal gives Aramco de facto stake in Australian LNG projects

MidOcean further boosts portfolio with Peru LNG equity, secures strategic investment from Mitsubishi Corporation.

Institutional investor EIG’s LNG company MidOcean Energy has concluded its US$2.15 billion acquisition of Tokyo Gas’ Australian liquefied natural gas assets, effectively giving its strategic investor Saudi Aramco equity in integrated LNG projects Down Under.

The deal includes Tokyo Gas’ interests in Chevron’s Gorgon LNG, the Woodside Energy-operated Pluto LNG project and Shell’s Queensland Curtis LNG. The portfolio spans the LNG value chain from upstream operations to midstream, liquefaction and sales.

As part of the transaction, MidOcean will open an office in Perth, Australia, to support and oversee the projects.

“The acquisition of these high quality, cash-flowing LNG projects is a significant milestone in MidOcean’s strategy to build a diversified, global ‘pure play’ integrated LNG company that supports the world’s transition to a low-carbon future,” said De la Rey Venter, MidOcean’s chief executive.

Tokyo Gas had also sought to divest its minority stake in Ichthys LNG in Australia to MidOcean, but project operator Inpex pre-empted that interest sale.

Barrenjoey, Barclays and JP Morgan acted as financial advisors to EIG and MidOcean in connection with the transaction. White & Case acted as legal advisor to EIG and MidOcean.

US company MidOcean recently moved to further boost its international LNG portfolio, entering into a definitive agreement with SK Earthon to acquire SK’s 20% interest in Peru LNG (PLNG).

The Hunt Oil-operated PLNG owns and operates the first export liquefaction project in South America. PLNG’s assets include the 4.45 million tonnes per annum processing capacity, a fully-owned 408-kilometre pipeline with 1.29 billion cubic feet capacity and a truck loading facility with capacity of up to 19.2 million cubic feet per day.

The PLNG acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions. Morgan Stanley acted as exclusive financial advisor to MidOcean on this transaction.

The company this week revealed it has secured an undisclosed strategic investment from Japan’s Mitsubishi Corporation, which MidOcean — that launched in late 2022 — said would speed up its strategy to create a high quality, diversified, global pure play integrated LNG company.

Mitsubishi has been an active player in the LNG sector for more than half a century, with investments spanning 12 projects across eight countries.

R Blair Thomas, EIG’s chief executive, commented: “Welcoming an industry heavyweight such as Mitsubishi Corp as an anchor investor and strategic partner accelerates MidOcean’s progress in creating a large-scale, pure play global LNG company.”

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