Japan’s LNG imports drop 16.8 percent in September

Japan’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports dropped in September after logging a rise for four months in a row.

The country received 5.41 million tonnes of LNG last month, down 16.8 percent when compared to the same month last year, according to the provisional data released by the country’s Ministry of Finance.

Compared to the previous month when Japan took 6.18 million tonnes, LNG imports decreased by 12.4 percent.

On the other side, Japan’s coal imports for power generation rose 17.8 percent to 9.97 million tonnes in September.

Japan paid about $2.89 billion for LNG supplies in September, a rise of 67.6 percent year-on-year.

State-run Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp (JOGMEC) said earlier this month the average contract-based price for spot LNG cargoes shipped to Japan in September had reached $21.60/mmBtu.

Looking at LNG shipments in September, deliveries from Asia from countries such as Malaysia and Indonesia decreased by 33.1 percent to 936,000 tonnes, the ministry’s data shows.

Middle East LNG shipments from countries like Qatar increased by 2.1 percent to 965,000 tonnes.

Additionally, shipments from Russia dropped 0.1 percent to 652,000 tonnes while US deliveries were down 22.1 percent to 327,000 tonnes.

Japan remained the world’s largest LNG importer last year and the country took 74.4 million tonnes of LNG.

However, China will probably overtake Japan this year.

China imported 58.48 million tonnes in the January-September period, while Japan received about 56.75 million tonnes.

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