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Tokyo Gas has signed a deal to sell its equity stakes in four integrated Australian LNG projects to a unit of US infrastructure fund EIG Global Energy Partners. The US$2.15 billion cash transaction marks the first major sale of equity stakes held by a Japanese utility in LNG projects. The deal would see Tokyo Gas sell its equity interests in Pluto, Gorgon, Queensland Curtis LNG (QCLNG) and Ichthys, all of which are mostly contracted to Asian markets. Japanese utilities have historically held minority stakes in LNG producing projects as a way to gain information about project operations. Tokyo Gas said the sale fits with its 2030 strategic plan, which includes reviewing its asset portfolio to allocate resources to growth areas. The sale would not affect Tokyo Gas’ existing offtake contracts with the four projects totaling 5 million tons/yr. The deal marks another attempt by EIG to enter Australia's LNG sector, underlining its broader LNG ambitions. Last year, it signed a deal to buy Origin Energy’s 10% stake in Australia Pacific LNG (APLNG) in Queensland, but the deal was eventually pre-empted by Origin’s partner ConocoPhillips, which purchased the additional equity in the 9 million ton/yr facility.

M&A, LNG Projects
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