April 2, 2007 / 1:42 PM / 12 years ago

UPDATE 1-Eni takes 13.6 pct stake in Angola LNG project

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MILAN, April 2 (Reuters) - Italy’s major oil and gas group, Eni, said on Monday it would take part in a $4 billion project to build a liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant in Angola, by buying a 13.6 percent stake in a company in charge of the project.

Under a memorandum of understanding with Angola’s state-run oil company Sonangol, Eni’s unit in Angola would buy the stake in Angola LNG Limited Consortium (A-LNG), which is in charge of construction of the 5 million-tonnes LNG plant in Soyo, 300 km north Luanda, Eni (ENI.MI) said in a statement.

In March, U.S. oil major Exxon Mobil Corp.(XOM.N) transferred its 13.6 stake to Sonangol, whose stake rose to 36.4 percent.

Once the deal with Eni is finalised, Sonangol would have a 22.8 percent stake in Angola LNG, while Chevron Corp. (CVX.N) would keep its 36.4 percent stake and Total (TOTF.PA) and BP (BP.L) would hold on to their 13.6 percent each, Eni said.

Eni said the deal would consolidate its position in Angola, where the Italian group already produces around 153,000 barrels per day.

The 28-year project envisages the development of 220 billion cubic metres (bcm) of gas, the production of 128 million tonnes of LNG, 104 million barrels of condensate and 257 million barrels of LPG, Eni said.

It said the LNG — gas super-cooled for shipping — will be earmarked for the U.S market and will be delivered to the re-gasification plant of Pascagoula, in the Gulf of Mexico and Eni will acquire re-gasification capacity of 5 bcm per year.

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