Asian spot liquefied natural gas (LNG) prices remained flat this week at the lowest level since July 2021 on muted demand and solid inventories in China, Japan and Korea, reports Reuters.
LNG prices fall
The average LNG price for May delivery into northeast Asia was $12.50 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), unchanged from the previous week, industry sources estimated.
Prices have fallen 55% year-to-date and more than 82% from the August 2022 peak of $70.50/mmBtu.
“North Asian demand drivers are still errant, even for off- season speculative cargos. Pricing seems to be driven by sentiment correlated with euro hub markers,” said Toby Copson, global head of trading at Trident LNG. “I expect we will trade in this narrow range while we sit in shoulder season – until some impetus emerges for utilities as Chinese and Korean storage seems topped up,” he added.
Fresh bouts of demand
Tobias Davis, head of LNG Asia at brokerage Tullett Prebon, said the market has seen “fresh bouts of demand” from Thailand’s PTT which lifted around 10 cargoes at $12-$13/mmBtu and is tendering for more volumes for May-September, while the Philippines secured its first LNG import cargo from Vitol and Indian end-users continue to pick prompt volumes.
“Prices below $13/mmBtu continue to deter China, which remains quiet and on the sidelines with opportunistic bids, while healthy storage in Japan and Korea continue to keep that all important end-user demand at bay,” Davis added.
Did you subscribe to our Newsletter?
It’s Free! Click here to Subscribe!