Total CEO Christophe de Margerie. Image courtesy of Mouvement des Entreprises de France/Flickr.

Russia’s Novatek is proposing to name a new liquefied natural gas carrier slated to work at the Yamal LNG terminal after late Total CEO Christophe de Margerie.

Russian president Vladmir Putin has already approved the plan, Russian news agency TASS said.

“He was a dignified man and this is certainly absolutely suitable to immortalize his memory. He was a good and reliable partner,” Putin said.

The proposal was made by Novatek’s chairman Leonid Mikhelson.

“I would like to say that we have lost a perfect partner Christophe de Margerie. We decided to make this initiative, asked his family to name a tanker which will deliver the produce after him,” Mikhelson said.

France’s Total holds a 20 percent stake in the Yamal LNG project, a three-train natural gas development expected to go online in late 2016.

Novatek holds a 60 percent operating stake and China’s CNPC holds a 20 percent stake.

De Margerie was killed in a plane crash last month after a jet he was riding in crashed into a snowplow at Moscow’s Vnukovo airport. The three crew members aboard the plane were also killed.

Vladimir Martynenko, the driver of the snowplow, was allegedly drunk at the time of the accident and has been arrested.

Air traffic controller Alexander Kruglov, senior engineer Vladimir Ledenev and traffic control trainee Svetlana Krivsun were also arrested on October 24 for their alleged involvement in the crash.

De Margerie was a vocal advocate for the Russian energy sector and spearheaded numerous international projects for Total.

Earlier this year, he negotiated the company’s entrance into the Russian shale sector by establishing a joint venture with Lukoil.

De Margerie also oversaw Total’s participation in the $20 billion Yamal LNG project Russia’s Novatek and China’s CNPC.

In July he told Reuters that the EU should focus on making deliveries from Russia safer rather than cutting its ties with the country.

Total projects that Russia will become its largest source of oil and gas by 2020.


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