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Dominion Energy delays until early 2021 completion of part of US gas assets sale


Regulatory clearance for Questar entities pending

Most infrastructure under deal to be sold around Nov. 1

Houston — Dominion Energy has delayed until next year the expected completion of part of the sale of its gas infrastructure assets to Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway because it is taking longer than anticipated to secure necessary US regulatory approval, the company said Sept. 30.

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In July, Berkshire Hathaway agreed to buy substantially all of Dominion's gas pipeline and storage assets for $4 billion in cash and the assumption of $5.7 billion in debt. As part of the deal, Berkshire Hathaway will become the operator of and take a 25% stake in the Cove Point Liquefaction terminal in Maryland, an important outlet for US gas to Europe and beyond with a capacity of about 5.25 million mt/year. Dominion will retain a 50% passive ownership.

At the time the deal was announced, Dominion said the transaction was expected to close during the fourth quarter, which begins Oct. 1 and ends Dec. 31.

In its latest statement, Dominion said it expects most of the assets to be sold around Nov. 1, but that the sale of assets tied to Questar Pipeline and Overthrust Pipeline would not be completed until early 2021 pending clearance from the Federal Trade Commission, a process that was taking longer than originally planned.

"Given all closing conditions have been met with respect to non-Questar Pipelines assets included in the transaction, Dominion Energy and Berkshire Hathaway Energy have opted to move forward with an expeditious initial closing to be followed with a subsequent Questar Pipelines closing in early 2021," Dominion said.

At the time the gas midstream assets sale to Berkshire Hathaway was announced, Dominion also canceled its $8 billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline project that it was building with Duke Energy, and said it would focus going forward primarily on its regulated utility businesses.