The German government has unveiled plans to build a fifth floating liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal, with a floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) to be provided by Texas-based Excelerate Energy.
The project will be implemented by a consortium made up of Engie of France, Tree Energy Solutions of Belgium and Eon of Germany. The German government will lease the FSRU, which will be located in the North Sea port of Wilhemshaven.
Germany’s minister of economy Robert Habeck has announced the project, the latest in a series of measures to build up replacement supplies for Russian gas. The new terminal will have a capacity of at least 5 billion square metres per year, and is expected to be commissioned in the fourth quarter of 2023.
Germany has set aside €3 billion (US$2.99 billion) to lease FSRUs. The first two FRSUs are scheduled to begin operations in December. They will be located near Wilhemshaven and at Lubmin on the Baltic Sea.
Excelerate Energy will deploy the latest FSRU from its integrated fleet to provide regasification services for a period of five years. It says the project will significantly increase its presence in the European market.
Founded in 2003 by George Kaiser and listed on the New York Stock Exchange, Excelerate currently owns a fleet of 10 FSRUs.
In April Excelerate signed a senior secured revolving credit facility, allowing the company to borrow up to US$350 million over a three-year term which expires in April 2025. Borrowings under the credit facility will bear interest at a per annum rate equal to the term Sofr reference rate plus 0.10%.
JPMorgan Chase Bank, Barclays Bank, Morgan Stanley Senior Funding, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, and Wells Fargo Securities served as joint lead arrangers and joint bookrunners. Oklahoma-based bank BOKF and Texas-based First Financial Bank were additional lenders. Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, and Frederic Dorwart served as legal counsel to Excelerate.