South Korea’s Kogas boosts gas sales in March

South Korean LNG importer Kogas boosted its gas sales in March, the first monthly increase since August last year.

State-owned Kogas sold 3.48 million mt last month, a rise of 10.9 percent compared to 3.14 million mt in March 2023, according to a stock exchange filing.

March sales were almost flat compared to the previous month’s 3.50 million mt.

Purchases by power firms decreased by 2.7 percent year-on-year to 1.40 million mt in March. These purchases rose by 9.3 percent compared to the previous month.

Moreover, Kogas said its city gas sales increased by 22.3 percent year-on-year to 2.08 million mt, while they dropped by 6 percent compared to the month before.

Kogas reported declines in its monthly gas sales during September 2023-February 2024.

In August last year, the company’s gas sales rose just 0.8 percent year-on-year.

Kogas sold 34.6 million mt during 2023, down from 38.3 million mt in 2022.

The firm said in its earnings report in February that residential demand in 2023 decreased due to higher average temperature, while industrial demand dropped due to the economic recession.

Kogas said total power generation decreased due to the economic recession and due to increase in power generation by direct LNG sourcing companies.

Korean LNG imports

Kogas operates 77 LNG storage tanks at five LNG import terminals in South Korea.

The large terminals include Incheon, Pyeongtaek, Tongyeong, and Samcheok, while the firm has a small-scale regasification terminal at the Aewol port on Jeju island as well.

Also, the firm is building a large terminal in Dangjin and expects to launch the first phase in December 2025.

South Korea imported 44.1 million mt of LNG in 2023, down from 46.3 million mt in the year before, according to customs data.

Official data for South Korean LNG imports in March is not yet available.

South Korean LNG imports in January rose to 4.85 million mt from 4.78 million mt in January 2023, while LNG imports in February dropped to 4.20 million mt from 5.08 million mt in the same month last year, the customs data shows.

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