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GLOBAL LNG-Flood of spot cargoes push prices to seven-week low

Asian liquefied natural gas (LNG) prices slumped this week on a flood of spot volumes amid subdued demand. Prices for delivery into northeast Asia in July are estimated at $4.50 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), the lowest level in seven weeks. The August price is in a slight contango but is also below $5.00 per mmBtu. Price spreads between Europe and Asia shrank to below 50 cents from over $1 earlier in May, reducing opportunities for spot trade between the Pacific and Atlantic basins. Cargo offers came from a ...

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Japanese utilities unlikely to face LNG shortages, analysts, officials say

A string of potential closures of Japanese reactors starting in March 2020 is unlikely to trigger a tightening of the supply of LNG for the country’s utilities, industry officials and analysts said. Japanese utilities would shift to natural gas-fired generation in the event of reactor closures, Satoru Katsuno, chairman of Japan’s Federation of Electric Power Companies, said at a press conference May 17. “But we’re not concerned much about tight supply” of LNG, he added. Katsuno and two analysts said that power companies’ long-term purchase contracts with LNG suppliers and ...

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US natural gas storage volume rises 100 Bcf to 1.753 Tcf: EIA

US natural gas in storage rose 100 Bcf to 1.753 Tcf for the week that ended Friday, the Energy Information Administration reported Thursday. The injection was less than an S&P Global Platts’ survey of analysts calling for a 103 Bcf injection. It was more than the 93 Bcf build reported during the corresponding week in 2018 as well as the five-year average injection of 88 Bcf, according to EIA data. It was also the third triple-digit build of the year and the 10th straight bearish injection. As a result, stocks ...

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U.S. gasoline prices this Memorial Day weekend are nearly the same as last year’s

Heading into the 2019 Memorial Day weekend, regular gasoline prices averaged $2.85 per gallon (gal) nationally on May 20, slightly lower than last year’s price of $2.92/gal before the holiday weekend. EIA expects U.S. regular retail gasoline prices will increase in the coming months and average $2.92/gal during the 2019 summer season (April through September), 7 cents/gal higher than last summer, according to EIA’s May Short-Term Energy Outlook. Although crude oil spot prices are expected to remain lower than price levels from last year, higher gasoline demand, lower gasoline inventories, ...

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Asia oil refiners mull run cuts with margins at 16-year low for season – sources, data

Asia’s oil refiners are considering reducing output after margins slumped to their lowest for the season since 2003, according to industry sources and Refinitiv data. Companies that planned to trim output include SK Energy, a unit of SK Innovation, the Singapore Refinery Company (SRC), owned by PetroChina and Chevron Corp and at least one refiner in Thailand, five people familiar with the matter said. In China, independent refiners known as ‘teapots’, which account for about a fifth of the country’s crude imports, operated at below 50% of capacity on average ...

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PetroChina raising gas prices ahead of pipeline reshuffle

PetroChina is bucking normal practice and raising its wholesale natural gas prices during the weak-demand spring season, several sources said, preparing for the coming consolidation of China’s pipeline assets and trying to recoup huge fuel import losses. The increases from PetroChina – which supplies more than 70 percent of China’s gas – come as spring brings warmer temperatures, when demand and prices typically fall. PetroChina is also under pressure to recoup continuing losses from its gas import business due to high input costs versus government-capped domestic prices, sources with knowledge ...

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Taiwan Formosa Petchem will keep refinery output at over 90%

Taiwan’s Formosa Petrochemical Corp is looking to keep its June throughput at its Mailiao refinery at more than 90% of capacity, similar to May despite weaker refining margins, its spokesman said on Thursday. Formosa operates a 540,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) refinery in Mailiao, one of Asia’s larger refineries in terms of capacity. “We have already sold our gasoline and diesel for June. We also have crude intake commitments,” said KY Lin on why it was not workable to cut runs next month. “If the market remains as weak as it is ...

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Russian oil flows to Slovakia resume – Transpetrol

Russian crude oil flows into Slovakia via the Druzhba pipeline resumed at 1800 local time (1600 GMT) on Wednesday, pipeline operator Transpetrol said on Thursday. Flows through the Druzhba pipeline were suspended last month due to contaminated crude in the system, sending shockwaves through global oil markets. Source: Reuters (Reporting by Tatiana Jancarikova; writing by Maria Kiselyova; editing by Tom Balmforth)

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Refinery news round-up: Turnarounds, new launches in focus in Asia-Pacific

Some planned works at refineries in the Asia-Pacific have been completed although turnarounds at a host of refineries in Japan and China are still ongoing. Meanwhile, refinery launches have been stepped up. NEW AND ONGOING MAINTENANCE, UPGRADES UPDATE NEAR-TERM NEW AND REVISED ENTRIES –Japanese refiner Fuji Oil shut in mid-May the sole 143,000 b/d crude distillation unit at its Sodegaura refinery in Tokyo Bay for about three weeks for a scheduled turnaround, a company spokesman said. –State-owned China National Offshore Oil Corp. Huizhou shut its 12 million mt/year Phase 1 ...

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Asia LNG spot price drops below $5/mmBtu as supply floods market

The Asian spot price for liquefied natural gas (LNG) has dropped to below $5 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) this week as sellers flooded the market with spot cargoes, trade sources said. The price is at its lowest level since the beginning of April. Oil majors Shell and BP each offered a July loading cargo at $4.60-$4.65/mmBtu on Wednesday in Platts market on close (MOC) window, at a price well below the $5.35/mmBtu levels seen last Friday, they added. A large tender by Egypt to sell up to 13 ...

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Bulgaria builds gas link to end full reliance on Russian gas

Bulgaria has started building a 240 million euro ($268 million) gas pipeline with Greece that will end the Balkan country’s total dependence on Russian gas and help diversify supplies in southeastern Europe. Sofia, which at present meets all of its gas needs from Russia via one route, pledged to start building gas links with its neighbours and diversify its suppliers in 2009, when a price dispute between Moscow and Kiev left hundreds of Bulgarians without heating in the middle of winter. After years of delays, a 182-km interconnector link between ...

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EnergyAustralia agrees to buy gas from LNG import terminal

EnergyAustralia, Australia’s third-largest energy retailer, on Wednesday reached a preliminary agreement to buy gas from a liquefied natural gas import terminal planned by Australian Industrial Energy, the companies said. Australian Industrial Energy has agreed to supply 15 petajoules a year of gas to EnergyAustralia over five years starting from January 2021 at an oil-linked price, they said. EnergyAustralia is the first customer locked in for the import project, to be built 100 km (62 miles) sound of Sydney. Source: Reuters (Reporting by Sonali Paul; editing by Christian Schmollinger)

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UK GAS-Prices rise as imports from Norway fall

British wholesale gas prices rose on Wednesday morning as imports from Norway fell. * Within-day gas price up 1.80 pence at 31.00 p/therm by 0748 GMT * Day-ahead gas price up 0.35 pence at 30.85 pence per therm * Traders said although supply and demand were balanced, UK prices had taken their signal from much lower receipts of Norwegian gas * Imports from Norway through the Langeled pipeline, the main UK-Norway gas pipeline – were down by around 14 million cubic metres (mcm) compared with the previous day, National Grid ...

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Saudi Aramco signs U.S. LNG deal with Sempra

Saudi Aramco has entered into a 20-year agreement with U.S.-based Sempra Energy to purchase liquefied natural gas(LNG) from its subsidiary Sempra LNG, the two companies said on Wednesday. The Saudi state oil giant plans to become a major global gas player while the U.S. market is undergoing a shale boom. Aramco has been developing its own gas resources and eyeing gas assets in the United States, Russia, Australia and Africa. The two companies are also finalising a 25% equity investment in the phase 1 of Port Arthur LNG, they said ...

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Daily shale gas output at PetroChina’s Changning field hits 10.1 mln cubic metres

Daily shale gas output at PetroChina’s Changning field in China’s southwestern Sichuan province reached 10.06 million cubic metres, the country’s top oil and gas group CNPC said on Wednesday. * By far, a total of 148 gas wells have been launched at Changning field and at least another 52 wells will be put into operation by the end of this year, with daily output to exceed 15 million cubic metres * Last year, CNPC produced 4.27 billion cubic metres of shale gas in Sichuan Source: Reuters (Reporting by Muyu Xu ...

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