India’s LNG imports continue to drop

India’s monthly liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports are continuing to decline, mostly due to very high spot prices.

Preliminary data from the oil ministry’s Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell shows that LNG imports in April declined by 13.2 percent to 2.47 billion cubic meters or about 1.81 million tonnes.

India’s LNG imports dropped when compared to the prior month as well. LNG imports decreased by 3.4 percent to 31.90 bcm or about 23.45 million tonnes in the fiscal year ending March 2022, PPAC previously said.

On the other side, natural gas production in April increased by 6.6 percent to 2.82 bcm. Gas production rose 18.7 percent in the April-March period to 34.02 bcm, according to PPAC.

The data from PPAC shows that India paid $1.3 billion for April LNG imports, a big increase compared to $0.8 billion last year.

Asian spot prices traded well above $30/MMBtu for weeks this year, prompting Indian buyers to hold off on buying spot volumes.

It dropped in the meantime and the JKM LNG price for July closed at 21.996/MMBtu on Monday, but it is still very high for this time of the year.

At the moment, India imports LNG via six facilities with a combined capacity of about 42.7 million tonnes.

Petronet LNG’s 17.5 mtpa Dahej terminal operated at 87.5 percent capacity while Shell’s 5 mtpa Hazira terminal operated at 47.2 percent capacity in April-March, the PPAC data shows.

Earlier this month, India’s largest LNG importer Petronet said that its Dahej terminal processed 178 TBTU of LNG in the first quarter. This compares to 204 TBTU in the same quarter last year and 196 TBTU in the previous quarter.

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