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Texas: Carlyle Group's oil terminal exit starts shakeout of U.S. crude exporters

HOUSTON, Oct 29 (Reuters) - Carlyle Group LP’s decision to abandon a Texas crude export project this month marked the start of a shake out among the nine deep water terminal proposals vying to export U.S. shale, said investors and analysts.

Its departure from the venture “is a testament to how heated the field is,” said Michael Tran, a managing director at RBC Capital Markets in New York. Rivals without Carlyle’s deep pockets “could face a similar fate,” he said.

The five U.S. crude export projects currently under federal review would add a combined 8.36 million bpd of export capacity, about two-thirds of current U.S. oil production.

The Carlyle facility, which is under review by a different federal authority, would boost that total even more. Its construction partner, Berry Group, has vowed to continue the project.

Carlyle, a Washington D.C.-based private equity firm, launched its $1 billion Corpus Christi, Texas, export terminal a year ago, challenging projects now underway by trader Trafigura AG and pipeline operators Enbridge Inc, Energy Transfer LP and Phillips 66, among others.

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