NEW DELHI: Indian state-run gas company Gas Authority of India (GAIL), in a tie up with EDF, has placed a non-binding bid for Repsol’s LNG assets in Trinidad and Tobago, Canada and Peru, the Indian company’s chairman said. The bid was made about two months ago, B.C. Tripathi said on Friday, adding a third partner was also involved in the bid.
The Spanish oil major is selling LNG assets in a drive to remove debt from its balance sheet and improve its chances of keeping an investment grade rating.
Tripathi said GAIL and partners had also made an offer to buy Repsol’s stake in Stream, a shipping joint venture equally owned by Repsol and Gas Natural Fenosa.
Repsol owns a 75 per cent stake in the Canaport import terminal in eastern Canada. It holds 20 per cent of the Peru LNG export plant and has exclusive export rights from that project. It has been shipping LNG from Trinidad and Tobago since 1999. Tripathi, who declined to comment on the bid’s value, said the Canaport LNG import terminal could be converted into an export facility.
Asked when the deal was likely to be finalised, he said, “No time frame has been set. It is up to the seller to decide”.
GAIL, which was recently given the go-ahead to take investment decisions of up 50 billion rupees ($927.73 million) without going to the government, is aggressively scouting for overseas gas assets to make up for falling local gas output.
In 2013 GAIL plans to import about three dozen LNG cargoes including 20 from the spot market. Last year it imported eight spot cargoes and five through short-term deals.