Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Petronet plans to buy 10 spot LNG cargoes in FY12

India's Petronet LNG plans to import 10 spot liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargoes this fiscal on top of its deals with Spain's Gas Natural and Qatar's Rasgas, its Chief Executive said on Tuesday, to meet growing energy demand in Asia's third largest economy.

"There is a lot of discussion that domestic gas may not be able to match projections made earlier. So the logical solution is LNG and we should be able to pitch in," AK Balyan told reporters.

India's upstream regulator SK Srivastava last week said Reliance Industries, which has partnered with BP on field development, was pumping 28 percent less-than-expected gas from the D6 block, India's second biggest gas producer after Mumbai High.

Balyan said Petronet had signed a deal with Gas Natural to buy 1.5 million tonnes of LNG, or 22 cargoes, spread over the financial year 2011/12 and 2012/13. India's financial year begins on April 1.

"We will get 12 cargoes this fiscal and 10 in the next fiscal," he said, referring to the deal with Gas Natural.

Petronet on Tuesday also said its March-quarter profit more than doubled from a year ago to Rs 206 crore (USD 46 million).

"It was due to more regassification volumes, regassification charges and we have been able to internally use gas more efficiently," Balyan said.

Petronet operates a 10-million-tonne-a-year LNG regassification plant at Dahej in western Gujarat state, and sells LNG to state-run firms Indian Oil Corp, Bharat Petroleum Corp and GAIL (India) Ltd, which then supply to industrial users.

It currently buys 7.5 million tonnes LNG annually from Qatar under a long-term deal.

Petronet is also seeking additional 2 to 4 million tonnes per year of LNG from Qatar for its 5-million-tonne-a-year Kochi terminal, expected to be commissioned in October-December 2012, and spare capacity at Dahej.

"We would like to have additional 2.5 million tonnes (a year) of LNG for the additional capacity that we have," he said referring to Dahej terminal.

Petronet also has long-term contracts to buy 1.5 million tonnes of LNG annually from Australia's Gorgon project from 2014/15 for its Kochi plant.


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