Total to expand partnership with India's Adani Group
Total announced an expansion of its partnership with India’s largest energy and infrastructure conglomerate the Adani Group on Monday, to contribute to the development of the Indian natural gas market.
The French energy giant said the Indian natural gas market represented a “substantial” growth perspective, explaining that it currently represented 7% of energy consumption but had grown over the last three years by more than 5% per annum.
That, Total said, was supported by an active policy of the Indian government that aimed to diversify its energy mix and develop domestic use of gas in cities and as a fuel for vehicles.
India had set the “ambitious” target of increasing the share of natural gas in its energy mix to 15% by 2030, the firm added.
The 50-50 partnership between Adani and Total included several assets across the gas value chain, notably two imports and regasification LNG terminals being Dhamra in east India and potentially Mundra in the west, as well as Adani Gas - one of the four main distributors of city gas in India of which Adani held 74.8% and of which Total would acquire 37.4%.
Adani Gas aimed to expand its distribution of gas in the next 10 years through its 38 concessions, covering 7.5% of the Indian population, and market natural gas to industrial, commercial and domestic customers, targeting six million homes as well as through 1,500 retail outlets of natural gas for vehicles.
As part of the partnership, Total said it would bring its LNG and retail expertise and would supply LNG to Adani Gas.
Total and Adani would also establish a joint venture to market LNG in India and Bangladesh.
“Energy needs in India are immense and the Indian energy mix is key to the climate change challenge,” said Total chairman and chief executive officer Patrick Pouyanné.
“Firmly investing to develop the use of natural gas in India is in line with Total’s ambition to become the responsible energy major.”
Pouyanné said the natural gas market in India would have a strong growth, and was an “attractive” outlet for the world's second-largest LNG player that Total had become.
“Adani will bring its knowledge of the local market and its expertise in the infrastructure and energy sectors.
“This partnership with Adani is a cornerstone to our development strategy in this country.”
To reach a 37.4% shareholding in Adani Gas in accordance with Indian stock market regulations and subject to regulatory approvals, Total said it would initially launch a tender offer to public shareholders to acquire up to 25.2% of equity shares before buying the remaining shares from Adani.
Taking into account the divestiture of the group’s interest in Hazira terminal in early 2019, the establishment of the partnership on gas in India represented a net acquisition cost for Total of around $600m over the 2020 financial year.