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In India, Shell agrees to buy LNG from Total

At the same time, the French supermajor signed a letter of intent to sell its minority stake in a regasification terminal in India to Royal Dutch Shell.

By
Daniel J. Graeber
French supermajor Total agrees to give up a stake in an LNG terminal in India in exchange for an LNG sales agreement with Royal Dutch Shell. File Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI
French supermajor Total agrees to give up a stake in an LNG terminal in India in exchange for an LNG sales agreement with Royal Dutch Shell. File Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 27 (UPI) -- French supermajor Total stated Monday it could capture value from its assets in India with an LNG divestment and product sales agreement with Shell.

Total on Monday signed a binding letter of intent to sell its 26 percent stake in the Hazira regasification terminal in India to Royal Dutch Shell. At the same time, the French supermajor signed a five-year agreement with Shell to sell it a half million tons of LNG per year from its global portfolio starting in 2019.

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"This deal enables Total to capture value through an asset disposal, while the LNG sales contract allows us to maintain the balance of our LNG portfolio," Philippe Sauquet, the company's president of gas, renewables and power operations, said in an emailed statement.

Year-over-year, Indian imports of petroleum, crude oil and petroleum products increased more than 40 percent.

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For Total, the agreement with Shell builds on its portfolio for sales of LNG, which has more maneuverability than piped gas. In July, the company paid $1.5 billion to acquire the exploration and production segment of the LNG portfolio held by French company Engie. Of note in the purchase was Engie's minority stake in the Cameron LNG facility in the United States, an emerging LNG exporter thanks to its rich shale natural gas reserves.

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The Engie acquisition included a fleet of 18 LNG tankers and access to European regasification infrastructure, which made the deal a game changer for Total.

Total was among the first of the supermajors to release results from the second quarter. Compared with the same period last year, the company's $3.6 billion in adjusted net income was up 44 percent.

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