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Refinancing enables LNG fleet expansion

August 2013

ISLAMIC refinancing is helping Maran Nakilat Co Ltd expand its fleet of LNG carriers from four vessels to six with the additional two scheduled for delivery in early 2014.

The company is a joint venture between Nakilat and Maran Ventures Inc. Following the refinancing, Nakilat has increased its ownership shares in Maran Nakilat Company.

The two new vessels are currently under construction in Korea and designed to carry LNG cargoes for producers from across the world. The refinancing agreement was signed with Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB) and Barwa Bank.

Nakilat managing director Muhammad Ghannam said: “Nakilat’s financial strength allows us to expand our business and to further cement Nakilat’s leadership position in the global LNG transportation industry. With the refinancing of Maran Nakilat Company we are proud to increase Nakilat’s total fleet from 54 LNG vessels to 56.

“The expansion of our fleet is evidence of Nakilat’s strong bond with our partner Maran Ventures Inc, a premier player in the LNG shipping industry, and we thank Maran for their invaluable cooperation. The refinancing transaction is also indicative of Nakilat’s solid relationship with QIB and Barwa Bank. We are grateful both to QIB and to Barwa Bank for their excellent support and we continue to look forward to working with Qatari banks to capitalise on opportunities for growth. Selecting the strongest partners both in shipping and in financing has been a cornerstone of Nakilat’s success.”

Bassel Gamal, QIB Group CEO, commented on the agreement, saying: “The signing of this agreement confirms the bank’s strategy and commitment to providing financial Islamic solutions that meet the requirements of its institutional and corporate clients, and its contribution in supporting the national companies in line with Qatar vision 2030 to build a stronger economy.

“This partnership between QIB and Barwa Bank in financing Maran Nakilat Company is a testament of the strength of the cooperation between financial institutions in Qatar. It also promotes a true partnership of the bank and its leading role in the financing of projects of national development in the local market, which contributes more than 90 per cent of its financing portfolio.”

Mohamed Mubarak Al Sabahi, head of government and public Sector, wholesale banking, Barwa Bank, said: “The selection of Barwa Bank for this deal amidst tough competition in the market is an important achievement for us financially and strategically as we strive to enhance the positioning of Sharia-compliant banking and finance as a strategic choice for major local, regional and international companies. This deal adds to the growing track record of our bank in asset financing and is another example of Barwa Bank delivering value to customers, shareholders and the Qatari economy.”




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