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Asian LNG prices at highest in 2024 on resilient summer buying

Tan KW
Publish date: Tue, 21 May 2024, 04:27 PM
Tan KW
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Asian spot liquefied natural gas prices rose to the highest since late-December as the region’s importers continued to snatch up shipments for delivery over the summer months.

The North Asian benchmark was trading at about US$11.5 per million British thermal units, according to traders with knowledge of the matter. Prices have risen more than 10% in the last week.

Moves by Asian importers like Japan and South Korea to restock gas inventories ahead of the Northern Hemisphere summer are compounding tight supply caused by disruptions at facilities in Malaysia and Australia. A heatwave across Southeast Asia has boosted LNG demand, and even importers in India - where gas plays only a minor role in the power mix - were buying cargoes.

Gujarat State Petroleum Corp bought a cargo for late-June to early-July delivery to India at about US$11.2 per million Btu, according to traders. Indian Oil Corp seeks a cargo for June in a tender that closes on Tuesday, and GAIL India Ltd is also looking for a shipment for June due the same day.

It’s unclear how long the buying will continue. The jump in prices means alternatives are now more cost-effective in emerging markets. Chinese firms could opt for cheaper domestic gas, while Indian industries may choose oil products over LNG.


  - Bloomberg


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