AIG Highstar Capital, a private equity fund sponsored by American International Group ( AIG), agreed to sell the Southern Star Central gas pipeline system to GE's ( GE) energy financial services unit and Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec, Canada's largest institutional investor.

The purchase price is $362 million, plus the assumption of $467 million in debt and preferred stock.

Southern Star is a regulated company that owns an interstate natural gas pipeline spanning more than 6,000 miles in Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Wyoming, Nebraska, Colorado and Texas. In addition to the pipeline, the system includes 39 compressor stations and eight gas storage fields.

AIG Highstar Capital acquired Southern Star in 2002 from Williams ( WMB). Southern Star's management will continue to operate and maintain the pipeline from its Owensboro, Ky., headquarters.

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