Norton Rose Fulbright advises on the US$1.2 billion financing and delivery of the world’s first converted FLNG production vessel “Hilli Episeyo”

Marshall Islands Business June 25, 2018

Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised Fortune Lianjiang Shipping S.A., an indirect subsidiary of shipping conglomerate CSSC (Hong Kong) Shipping Company Limited, on the US$1.2 billion financing and delivery of the world’s first converted floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) production vessel “Hilli Episeyo”, under a sale and leaseback agreement between Fortune Liangjiang Shipping S.A. as lessor and Golar Hilli Corporation as bareboat charterer, supported by Golar LNG Limited.

Pre-delivery financing agreements were put in place in 2015, whereby Fortune Lianjiang Shipping S.A. part-financed the FLNG conversion works, backed by a US$840 million senior loan provided by China Development Bank Corporation.

The Marshall Islands-flagged FLNG production vessel was accepted under its Liquefaction Tolling Agreement with Anglo-French oil and gas company Perenco and Cameroon’s state-owned Societe Nationale des Hydrocarbures on 4 June 2018, and subsequently delivered to Fortune Lianjiang Shipping S.A. on 20 June 2018, at which point Fortune Lianjiang Shipping S.A. took full ownership of the vessel and a bareboat charter with Golar Hilli Corporation became effective. The vessel is already fully operating off the coast of Cameroon and the first of its cargoes has arrived in China.  

The Norton Rose Fulbright team advising on the lease finance aspects of the deal was led by Singapore-based partner Ben Rose, supported by of counsel Sue Ann Gan and associates Jaye Bhogal and Sophie Polisena. Hong Kong-based partner Jonathan Silver and senior associate Georgina Axon advised Fortune Liangjiang Shipping S.A. and CSSC (Hong Kong) Shipping Company Limited in relation to the senior loan with China Development Bank Corporation. Of counsel Sung-Hwan Choi provided Marshall Islands law advice.

Ben Rose commented:

“This is a landmark deal. ‘Hilli Episeyo’ is the world's first converted Floating Liquefaction (FLNG) vessel, having been converted from a Moss-type LNG carrier at Keppel Shipyard in Singapore. It is able to liquefy 2.4 million tons of LNG per annum. When compared with other FLNG projects using bespoke newbuild options, Golar’s solution to convert an existing ship offers a quick and relatively cheap solution to the problem of monetising ‘stranded gas’, which in this case refers to gas in offshore fields that would not be viable or economic to extract using existing methods. Such stranded gas represents 40% of all offshore natural gas reserves. Golar’s converted FLNG business model dramatically reduces the cost per MMBTU of liquefying gas, whilst allowing Golar’s customers to meet urgent requirements for new gas-to-power projects globally.”

For further information please contact:

Jessica Seah, Marketing and Communications Manager, Asia. Norton Rose Fulbright
Tel: +852 3405 2327

Notes for editors:

Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright is a global law firm providing the world’s preeminent corporations and financial institutions with a full business law service. The firm has more than 4,000 lawyers and other legal staff based in Europe, the United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, Australia, Africa and the Middle East.

Recognized for its industry focus, Norton Rose Fulbright is strong across all the key industry sectors: financial institutions; energy; infrastructure, mining and commodities; transport; technology and innovation; and life sciences and healthcare. Through its global risk advisory group, the firm leverages its industry experience with its knowledge of legal, regulatory, compliance and governance issues to provide clients with practical solutions to the legal and regulatory risks facing their businesses.

Norton Rose Fulbright operates in accordance with its global business principles of quality, unity and integrity, aiming to provide the highest possible standard of legal service in each of its offices and to maintain that level of quality at every point of contact.

Norton Rose Fulbright Verein, a Swiss verein, helps coordinate the activities of Norton Rose Fulbright members but does not itself provide legal services to clients. Norton Rose Fulbright has offices in more than 50 cities worldwide, including London, Houston, New York, Toronto, Mexico City, Hong Kong, Sydney and Johannesburg. For more information, see