Total Gas & Power North America Inc. has agreed to buy the equivalent of 91,250,000 MMBtu of liquefied natural gas (LNG) annually plus 13,500,000 MMBtu of seasonal LNG volumes upon the commencement of train five operations at the Sabine Pass Liquefaction LLC project in Louisiana, project developer Cheniere Energy Partners LP said Monday.

The volumes represent about 2 million tons per annum (mtpa), of the 4.5 mtpa of nominal capacity of train five.

Total would buy LNG on an free on board basis, which would be loaded onto Total’s vessels for a purchase price indexed to the monthly Henry Hub price plus a fixed component, Cheniere said. The term of the 20-year agreement begins upon the first commercial delivery for train five and has an extension option of up to 10 years.

“Total, one of our longstanding customers at Sabine Pass, will become the next foundation customer for LNG exports as Sabine Liquefaction further expands its liquefaction project,” said Cheniere CEO Charif Souki.

Deliveries from train five are expected to occur as early as 2018, Cheniere said. The agreements subject to conditions, including Sabine Liquefaction receiving regulatory approvals, securing necessary financing arrangements, making a final investment decision, and issuing a notice to proceed for train five.

Sabine Liquefaction is developing five liquefaction trains adjacent to the Sabine Pass LNG import terminal. The first two are under construction and the third and fourth are expected to commence construction in 2013. As previously announced, a partial assignment agreement was struck by Sabine Liquefaction and Total, allowing Sabine Liquefaction to gain access to services under Total’s terminal use agreement with Sabine Pass LNG LP, including Total’s berthing and storage capacity, making further expansion of the LNG export capabilities at the Sabine Pass LNG terminal possible (see Daily GPI, Oct. 29).

In addition to Australia, Total has interests in LNG projects in Indonesia, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Angola and Russia. Total has also secured long-term access to LNG regasification capacity in LNG importing countries.

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