Russia’s Yamal LNG secures €3.6bn from local banks

The $27bn natural gas project, currently in construction, is still seeking further financing.

The world's largest natural gas development project, Yamal LNG, has secured a €3.6 billion loan from two Russian banks, Sberbank and Gazprombank, according to Novatek, the project's majority owner. 

Under the loan terms, the 15-year credit facility will have a 4.7 percent annual interest rate over six-month EURIBOR. This is part of the project financing package for the $27 billion project, located in northwestern Siberia. 

Earlier in 2015, the project received financing from the National Welfare Fund of Russia in the amount of RUB150 billion ($2.28 billion; €2.02 billion). 

“Together with the project's shareholders, in the nearest future we plan to secure the remaining amount of the external financing required for Yamal LNG. The project is progressing in accordance with the approved schedule and we confirm our plans to launch the first train of the LNG plant in 2017,” said Evgeniy Kot, general director of Yamal LNG. 

Russia's largest natural gas producer Novatek holds a 50.1 percent stake in the project while state-owned China National Petroleum Corporation and France's Total each retain a 20 percent stake. 

China's Silk Road Fund acquired the remaining 9.9 percent stake last month for €1.09 billion and provided a loan worth €730 million to finance the project as part of the transaction. 

So far, shareholders have invested $13 billion, head of Novatek Leonid Mikhelson said in a Reuters interview.