Oil exploration firm Tullow Oil has closed a US$3.5bn committed, secured and revolving credit facility with a syndicate of 27 banks to fund major development projects in Ghana.

Mandated lead arrangers include BNP Paribas, Bank of America, Barclays, Crédit Agricole, Deutsche Bank, DNB, HSBC, ING, Lloyds TSB, Natixis, Nedbank, RBS, Société Générale, Standard Chartered and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.

The IFC also acted as a lender on the deal.

The facility is split between a senior facility of US$3.235bn, a junior facility of US$100mn, and an IFC facility of US$165mn all with a final maturity of November 2019, a spokesperson at Tullow confirms to GTR.

In addition, Tullow will have the option to increase its senior facility by up to an additional US$500mn, subject to further lender commitments.

The loan will also be used to refinance the company’s last loan of US$2bn, which was due to expire in 2015.

Ian Springett, chief financial officer for Tullow says: “In conjunction with our strong operating cash flows this will provide a solid foundation for funding our major development projects in Ghana as well as other capital investments. The very positive support which we received from our relationship banks is welcome at a time of continuing uncertainty in global capital markets.”