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    Regas Project in Ghana Reaches Financial Close


The project will provide industry in the port of Tema with cleaner and cheaper energy.

by: Joe Murphy

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Regas Project in Ghana Reaches Financial Close

Financial close has been reached on a regasification project at the port of Tema in Ghana, after it secured a $31mn loan from the Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund (EAIF), the fund said on November 24.

Tema is home to a number of Ghana's largest power stations, generating electricity for local industry, and the LNG import facility will allow them to switch from burning light cycle oil and heavy fuel oil to natural gas, which is 30% cheaper and produces 30% less CO2.

The project's developer is Access LNG, a joint venture between Helios Investment Partners, an Africa-focused private investment fund, and Gasfin Development, which develops LNG infrastructure. The EAIF's 10-year loan will go towards the cost of a floating regasification unit, which will be integrated with an LNG carrier that is acting as a floating storage unit.

Fixed infrastructure, including a breakwater, mooring facilities, a subsea pipeline and a 8-km onshore pipeline to take gas from the port to Tema's industrial area, was financed separately.

The terminal will bring ashore 250mn ft3/day (nearly 2.6bn m3/year) of gas at full capacity, although its developers have not disclosed a timeframe for its launch.

“The new terminal at Tema is an innovative approach to securing reliable and cost-efficient gas supply,” Martijn Proos, a director at Ninety One, which manages EAIF, commented. “The investment by EAIF will contribute to reducing carbon emissions, contributing to Ghana’s long-term energy needs and strengthening its economic stability and economic development efforts.”

The facility, he continued, “answers Ghana’s need for greater fuel security and optimal supply. The project will reduce the cost of power generation for Ghana’s power sector, provide an adequate margin of fuel reserves and benefit the ongoing expansion of the country’s electricity and gas grids.”

Helios partner Ogbemi Ofuya raised the prospect of Access LNG developing additional LNG projects in sub-Saharan Africa. Current low gas prices mean “there is a great opportunity for Access to support markets switching to natural gas as a clean, cheap transition fuel as we push developments to support a greener, more efficient energy economy," he said.

EAIF is part of the Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG), supported by seven donor countries as well as the World Bank.