LONDON, Feb 15 (Reuters) - U.S. independent energy producer Anadarko has notched up another long-term commitment to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) from its proposed Mozambique terminal, moving closer to approving the multi-billion dollar project.
Anadarko and Exxon Mobil are expected to sanction two separate but neighbouring LNG projects in Mozambique this year after finding giant offshore gas deposits, turning the African nation into a major global gas exporter.
The company said on Friday it had struck a sales and purchase agreement (SPA) with India’s Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd for 1 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) for 15 years.
The deal now gives Anadarko over 8.5 mtpa in offtake commitments from the project, a level it previously stated would allow it to take a final investment decision (FID). The initial capacity of the two-train terminal is 12.88 mtpa.
Anadarko has said it would take the FID in the first half of this year and, in an annual report it released late on Thursday, it signalled that another long-term agreement would be announced before it sanctions the project.
Other committed buyers, according to Anadarko, are Tokyo Gas and Britain’s Centrica in a joint deal, Royal Dutch Shell, Chinese state energy firm CNOOC, Tohuku Electric and French utility EDF.
In its annual report, Anadarko said it had SPAs of more then 7.5 mtpa and that “execution of SPAs representing 2.0 mtpa of additional contracted volume is anticipated prior to FID.”
With the Bharat deal adding another 1 mtpa, this indicates Anadarko expects to announce another SPA before approving the project.
Indian state energy firms Bharat, ONGC and Oil India hold a 30 percent equity stake in the project either directly or through subsidiary joint ventures but this is the first offtake agreement with an Indian buyer.
India is the world’s fourth largest LNG importer after Japan, China and South Korea - a position it is expected to consolidate in years to come with growing imports. (Reporting by Sabina Zawadzki; Editing by Mark Potter)