By Christian Moess Laursen

European energy giants Shell, BP and TotalEnergies have signed deals to invest in Abu Dhabi's Ruwais liquefied natural-gas project, which is set to boost the United Arab Emirates' export capacity significantly as it pushes into global LNG markets.

Abu Dhabi's state-owned oil company Adnoc said Wednesday that the three energy majors, along with Japan's Mitsui, will each buy 10% stakes in the project for undisclosed sums. Adnoc, the operator of the project, will keep the remaining 60% stake.

London-based Shell will additionally purchase 1 million metric tons of LNG a year, with Mitsui buying 600,000 tons a year, Adnoc said.

The Ruwais plant, with production capacity of 9.6 million tons a year, will more than double the UAE's LNG production capacity to around 15 million tons annually.

The project--which Adnoc greenlighted last month--will allow the oil giant to provide more lower-carbon gas to meet the growing demand for natural gas, it said.

"The UAE continues to make significant strides in addressing energy challenges through investment in clean and lower-carbon intensity projects," Adnoc Chairman and crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan said.

Gulf states have been looking to bolster their LNG capacities as gas is set to play a pivotal part in the global low-carbon transition.

Last month, Saudi Arabia's national oil company Aramco signed a 20-year deal with U.S. energy-industry supplier NextDecade to buy 1.2 million tons annually. Earlier this year, Qatar outlined plans to expand its North Field project, as it plans to raise production by nearly 85% before 2030.

Shell--the world's largest LNG exporter--said separately that the deal aligns with its strategy to strengthen its portfolio of the super-chilled gas, as it expects global demand will jump more than 50% by 2040. The acceleration of industrial coal-to-gas switching in China, South Asian and South-east Asian countries will drive this demand, according to Shell.

Shell didn't provide financial details of its investment but said it will be covered by its full-year capital-expenditure guidance of $22 billion to $25 billion.

Last month, Adnoc awarded a Technip Energies-led joint venture an engineering, procurement and construction contract and said it would start construction of the project soon. Deliveries of LNG are expected to start in 2028.

The Ruwais plant, located 240 kilometers west of the city of Abu Dhabi, will use electric-driven motors instead of conventional gas turbines and will be powered by clean energy. It will be the first LNG export facility in the Middle East and North Africa region.

Write to Christian Moess Laursen at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

07-10-24 0913ET