SEA\LNG, the multi-sector industry coalition aiming to accelerate the widespread adoption of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a marine fuel, yesterday announced the addition of the first financial institution to the coalition; Societe Generale. Joining a growing band of industry leaders from across the LNG value chain, Societe Generale brings an essential financial perspective to the group which aims to accelerate the uptake of LNG as a marine fuel.
Peter Keller, SEA\LNG chairman and executive vice president, Tote, said: “As the 0.5% global sulphur cap from January 2020 edges ever closer, the case for LNG as a marine fuel continues to gather momentum. Innovative financing is a core component to breaking down barriers to adoption and Societe Generale is at the forefront of developing frameworks to support this evolution. We are therefore delighted to welcome them to our growing coalition and look forward to benefiting from their extensive knowledge and experience.”
Paul Taylor, Global Head of Shipping Finance, Societe Generale Corporate & Investment Banking, commented: “The use of LNG as a marine fuel is gradually becoming a global reality. In line with our wider environmental commitment to promoting greener solutions, Societe Generale recognises the benefits of LNG in lowering local pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, when compared with traditional marine fuels. Societe Generale wants to play a key role in supporting the SEA\LNG coalition to realise its goal of making LNG a viable maritime fuel for 2020 and beyond. This strategic membership will help develop a long-term financial framework which we hope will contribute to, and supplement, the work of other industry leaders in the LNG shipping value chain.”
Societe Generale’s commitment to financing alternative solutions – which support the development of green maritime transport – is demonstrated by its pioneering involvement in the first transaction for the European Union’s recently instituted Green Shipping Guarantee programme. Societe Generale acted as the sole mandated lead arranger, lease investor, facility and security agent, hedge provider, and lender in a EUR 142.6 million French lease financing of “Honfleur”, the first LNG-powered ferry to be commissioned by Brittany Ferries, with a funded guarantee from the European Investment Bank.
The bank’s “Sustainable & Positive Impact Finance” offer (*see below for details), demonstrates its capacity to innovate, as well as its pioneering spirit to develop financing solutions that integrate the environmental challenges of its clients.
The addition of Societe Generale to the coalition further strengthens SEA\LNG’s collaborative membership which continues to leverage knowledge, networks, and real-life examples to obtain a competitive global LNG value chain for cleaner maritime shipping.