GDF Suez nears $4bn deal with Chinese fund

GDF Suez and China Investment Corp are in exclusive talks to seal a $4bn (£2.5bn) alliance that will help the French utility fund its expansion in booming Asia and offer Beijing access to new energy resources.

The world’s biggest utility outlined the details of the partnership, its second large deal in a year after buying 70 per cent of International Power, as it unveiled first-half earnings that beat expectations.

Under the partnership, China’s sovereign wealth fund CIC will pay €2.3bn (£2bn) for a 30 per cent stake in GDF Suez’s exploration and production unit.

CIC will also purchase the French group’s 10 per cent stake in a natural gas liquefaction plant in Trinidad and Tobago for €600m, a joint statement said.

The fund will also co-finance GDF Suez’s projects in Asia and the Pacific and help the utility win deals in the high-growth region.