Doug Arnell has decided to step down from his position on February 1, 2015. Arnell’s decision is driven by a personal wish to return with his family to his home country of Canada.

The company said that Arnell will be succeeded by Gary Smith, who is well known to Golar and who brings with him a track record of leadership and operational management success in the mid-stream oil and gas, shipping and LNG businesses.

Commenting on Smith’s career, the company said it spans 35 years, including 25 years with Shell and Caltex Australia (a Chevron affiliate) in roles including General Manager LNG Shipping for Shell and General Manager Refining, Supply and Distribution for Caltex Australia.

In the period between March 2006 and September 2009 he was CEO of the then smaller Golar LNG Ltd, a position he relinquished to return to his native for family reasons. Since May 2014 Smith has worked as a consultant for Golar with special emphasis on increasing the utilisation of the shipping fleet.

Golar said Arnell will continue to work closely with the company on an advisory basis, devoting his time to ensuring the successful execution of GoFLNG opportunities in Cameroon, Canada and other key locations. Arnell will also be appointed to the Board of Golar’s Nasdaq listed affiliate Golar LNG Partners LP.