GLOBAL LNG: Prices Steady in Subdued Market
Asian liquefied natural gas (LNG) prices were steady this week amid limited trading activity.
The price of Asian spot cargoes for February delivery was pegged at $6.90 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), in line with the previous week.
Traders eyed developments in Nigeria where Eni has declared force majeure on loadings from the country's LNG export plant due to pipeline sabotage.
All other suppliers continued to ship, although traders said the pace of loadings had slowed.
"There's a slight backlog of vessels, they're not loading as quickly as they normally would," said a trader.
"There's obviously not enough LNG to bring ships in quickly or as per scheduled."
Nigeria LNG's export plant at Bonny Island can produce 22 million metric tonnes of liquefied gas a year and has long-term supply contracts with buyers in Italy, Spain, Turkey, Portugal and France. It also sells on the spot market.
On the demand side, Egypt, one of this year's brightest spots for LNG imports, is facing difficulty meeting payments due to its foreign currency crisis.
Sources said that Egypt has asked oil and LNG suppliers to extend payment terms to 90 days after delivery.
Traders said that Italy's offshore terminal at Livorno, OLT Toscana, picked DufEnergy Trading to supply a cargo earlier this month following a recent tender to secure a delivery intended to cover occasional spikes in Italian gas demand.
Rival trading companies Koch Supply & Trading, Gunvor and Econgas participated in the tender, sources said.
Swiss trading house Trafigura delivered the cargo to DufEnergy at the OLT terminal, sources added.
In Australia, AGL Energy has agreed to sell gas to Santos Ltd and its partners in the first long term sale to the Gladstone LNG project, while Chevron Corp will sell up to 1 million tonnes a year from its Gorgon project to China Huadian Green Energy Co over 10 years starting in 2020.
Reporting by Sarah McFarlane and Oleg Vukmanovic