Continuing its march toward realizing its $3.4 billion asset divestment plan for 2003, El Paso Corp. on Thursday sold various Mid-Continent and northern Louisiana midstream assets to Regency Gas Services LLC, an affiliate of Charlesbank Capital Partners LLC. Subject to closing conditions, El Paso valued the transaction at $120 million. The deal is expected to close by the end of the second quarter 2003.

News of the midstream asset sale came a day after El Paso reported that it had closed the sale of its interests in Enerplus Global Energy Management Co. to Enerplus Resources Fund for $35 million. The Enerplus deal was first announced in early March (see NGI, March 10).

These sales support El Paso’s previously announced 2003 business plan (see NGI, Feb. 10), which includes exiting non-core businesses quickly but prudently, and strengthening and simplifying the balance sheet while maximizing liquidity. El Paso now has either closed or has under contract non-core asset sales totaling $2.3 billion for 2003, or 67% of its asset sales goal of $3.4 billion for calendar year 2003.

Just last month, the company reported that it had divested over 50% of its goal in the first quarter of the year (see NGI, March 31). The company recently sold its asphalt business, its stake in the ECK Generating project, its remaining share of the Alliance Pipeline and its oil and gas assets in Drumheller, AB.

Adding to the uplifting news, El Paso Corp. said earlier this month that a consortium of 50-plus bankers have agreed to a one-year extension of the company’s $3 billion revolving credit facility that was due to expire in May 2004 (see NGI, April 21). The new credit facility, which will now mature in June 2005, was secured by El Paso’s interests in four interstate natural gas pipelines — El Paso Natural Gas, Tennessee Pipeline, ANR Pipeline and Colorado Interstate Gas (CIG) — as well as other assets.

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