No certainty on FID signing date for NLNG train 7

The much publicised Final Investment Decision (FID) for train 7 of the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) limited that was anticipated to take place this month will not happen again, sources tell BusinessDay.
The reason is that the exercise will not take place until after the completion of the Front End Engineering Design (FEED) which is expected to give investors a fair idea of what would be needed financially to complete the project.
The non-signing of the FID however does not mean that other commitments or activities that would facilitate the construction of the plant are not going on behind the scene, a source close to the company told BusinessDay.
Expectation that the FID was going to be signed by the end of this year was high shortly after the contract for the FEED was awarded in July this year.
NLNG said then that it would be in the global financial market looking for $7 billion from potential investors to expand its operations from 22 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) to 30mtpa.
Tony Attah, managing director of NLNG was quoted to have said that a financial adviser had equally been appointed by the company ahead of the expected FID.
The sale and purchase agreements (SPAs) for the new volumes had been locked down with off-takers since 2007, but its terms would need to be concretised before the FID is achieved.
“The company has made efforts to do Train-7 since 2007, essentially, almost 10 years, but we believe that this is the moment. As one of my friends will say, the stars are lining up in favour of our company and this project,” Attah said.
The NLNG on in July this year had meetings to commemorate its repayment of $5.45 billion taken from its shareholders to build its six existing LNG trains, in addition to signing dual Front End Engineering Design (FEED) contracts with two consortia for the Train-7.
Start­ing from Septem­ber 1999, when it first shipped out the first LNG from Train-2 of its Bonny Is­land fa­cil­ity, to De­cem­ber 2007 when it last built Train-6, the NLNG had pre­vi­ously pro­gressed with good speed build­ing six trains within nine years.
These in­cluded the Train-1 in Septem­ber 1999; Train-2 in Fe­bru­ary 2000; Train-3 in 2002; Trains 4 and 5 in Novem­ber 2005 and Fe­bru­ary 2006; as well as Train-6 in De­cem­ber 2007.

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