* Part of Total’s strategy to build up LNG portfolio
* Total may buy equity stake in ECA LNG project. (Adds details and quote)
PARIS, Nov 5 (Reuters) - French energy group Total and Sempra Energy have signed a memorandum of understanding on the north American liquefied natural gas (LNG) market, which could see Total acquire a further stake in the sector.
The deal could see Total take a contract for approximately up to 9 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) of LNG offtake across Sempra Energy’s LNG export development projects on the U.S. Gulf Coast and West Coast of North America, specifically the Cameron LNG Phase 2 and Energia Costa Azul (ECA) LNG projects.
Total, the second-largest player in the global LNG market, said the relationship with Sempra Energy, will boost its goal to build a diverse portfolio of LNG supply options.
Total, which is already a partner of Cameron LNG joint venture with a 16.6 percent stake, also may acquire an equity interest in the Energia Costa Azul LNG project.
“We are pleased to collaborate with Sempra Energy and the other Cameron LNG co-owners to extend the Cameron LNG project and to further enhance its competitiveness,” said Total’s CEO Patrick Pouyanne in a statement.
The $10 billion phase 1 of the Cameron LNG joint-venture liquefaction-export project, which includes three liquefaction trains with approximately 14 Mtpa of export capacity, is under construction in Louisiana.
All three trains are expected to be producing LNG in 2019, added Total.
The second phase will add two additional liquefaction trains and up to two LNG storage tanks with approximately 9 Mtpa of capacity, the company also said. (Reporting by Bate Felix; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)