Australia’s Santos cuts debt, extends loan

Australian LNG operator and stakeholder, Santos said it has reduced its net debt while also extending a loan facility.

Santos has last year announced a new strategy and revealed a plan in December that involves selling off its non-core assets as it is aiming to cut net debt by $1.5 billion within three years.

The Adelaide-based company on Monday announced the early repayment of $250 million of its $1.2 billion export credit agency (ECA) supported uncovered syndicated facility, scheduled to mature in 2019.

The repayment would be made on 18 April and generate annual gross interest savings of approximately $5.5 million, Santos said in its statement.

Following the repayment, the outstanding balance of the facility will be reduced to $950 million.

Santos has also extended the term of $810 million of bilateral bank loan facilities. The facilities were due to mature in 2018 and have been extended to 2022 on

The facilities were due to mature in 2018 and have been extended to 2022 on “favourable terms”, Santos said, adding that the facilities “are currently undrawn.”

Santos Chief Financial Officer Anthony Neilson said the ECA repayment and bilateral extension were consistent with the company’s focus on reducing debt, extending the debt maturity profile and reducing financing costs.

“We will continue to review our debt maturities and target our stated goal of a $1.5 billion reduction in net debt by the end of 2019,” Neilson said.

To remind, Santos reported a full-year net loss of $1.05 billion, mainly due to the $1.1 billion write-down in the value of its Gladstone liquefied natural gas project.

Santos also slashed its net debt by 26 percent to $3.5 billion in the 12 months to December 31 and has flagged the prospect of resuming dividends in 2017.


LNG World News Staff

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