India’s LNG imports jump 18%

14 May 2020

In an indication of increasing demand for natural gas in the country, India’s import of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) jumped 18 per cent to 33,680 Million Standard Cubic Meter (MMSCM) in 2019-2020, as weaker global prices of LNG prompted the local industry to consume more, data analysed by ETEnergyWorld showed. Despite higher volumes, the LNG import bill witnessed a decline last fiscal indicating a sustained weakness in global LNG prices. According to data published by Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell (PPAC), the country’s LNG import declined 8 per cent to $9.5 billion in 2019-2020.

According to analysts many refiners, gas marketing companies and gas-based power plant operators aggressively grabbed distressed LNG cargoes during the first quarter of 2020 in anticipation of robust natural gas demand.

All the major sectors which consume imported LNG witnessed a major jump in demand last financial year. Data showed LNG imports by the power sector increased 26 per cent to 3,595 MMSCM.
While India remained one of the few strong LNG demand centres in Asia up to March this year, the lockdown measures deployed to arrest the outbreak of Covid-19 have severely impacted LNG demand from power plants, CGD companies as well as the refinery and petrochemical sector.