China’s LNG imports climb in April

China’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports rose for the third month in a row in April, according to customs data.

Data from the General Administration of Customs shows that the country received about 4.77 million tonnes in April, a rise of 10.3 percent when compared to the same month last year.

China imported 21.16 million tonnes of LNG during the first four months of this year, down by 1.7 percent compared to the same period last year.

In March, China received 5.36 million tonnes of LNG, up by 16.9 percent when compared to the last year, while in February LNG imports increased by 8.2 percent to 5.21 million tonnes.

January LNG imports dropped by 24.2 percent to 5.91 million tonnes.

Including pipeline gas, China’s gas imports dropped by just 0.3 percent year-on-year to 35.68 million tonnes in January-April.

The country’s pipeline gas imports rose by 12.6 percent in April to 4.21 million tonnes, the data shows.

Japan was the world’s top liquefied natural gas importer in 2022, overtaking China, but both of the countries took fewer volumes when compared to the year before.

China received about 63.44 million tonnes of LNG last year, down 19.5 percent year on year, as Covid-19 lockdowns and high prices curbed demand for LNG in China.

However, China has started to relax Covid-related measures in December last year and spot prices dropped considerably this year.

The JKM for July settled at $9.495/MMBtu on Thursday.

China took more LNG in April compared to Japan’s LNG imports of 4.53 million tonnes, which dropped year-on-year.

However, during January-April Japan imported some 23.47 million tonnes of LNG, about 2.31 million tonnes more than China.

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