LNG import cost falls on revised deal with Qatar: Dharmendra Pradhan

LNG import cost falls on revised deal with Qatar: Dharmendra Pradhan

The revision in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) agreement with Qatar has helped bring down the cost of

importing natural gas to less than $5 per million metric British thermal units (mmBtu) from $12, oil

minister Dharmendra Pradhan said.

In December last year, India got Qatar to agree to slashing gas price by half to match a slump in global

energy rates, helping the nation save billions of dollars, as well as get waiver from a Rs.12,000 crore

liability for short-lifting of gas.

India, which got $15 billion of benefits during the first 11 years of the term contract with Qatar

beginning 2003 by way of enjoying low gas prices when the world energy rates were rising, is currently

paying less than $5 per mmBtu for 7.5 million tonnes a year of LNG it buys from RasGas Co. Ltd of Qatar.

“Earlier the prices during 2015 were in excess of $12 per mmBtu. The current price applicable under the

contract works out to less than $5 per mmBtu based on prevailing crude prices,” Pradhan said in a

written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha.

This revision, applicable from 1 January, has led to making LNG cheaper for the end consumers, he said.

The revised formula will base the price on a three-month average figure of Brent crude oil, replacing a

five-year average of a basket of crude imported by Japan, with a rider that Petronet LNG Ltd (PLL) buys

an additional 1 million tonnes of LNG annually.Further, PLL—the firm that imported LNG from

RasGas—has executed an agreement for additional supply of 1 million tonnes a year of LNG for about 12

years with effect from 1 January 2016 at the prevailing market prices, Pradhan said.

He said Qatar will also not seek Rs.12,000 crore from PLL for “under-lifting” LNG from RasGas by 38%.

“RasGas and Petronet LNG Ltd agreed to rescheduled the LNG quantity not taken by Petronet LNG Ltd

during 2015 to a future period and RasGas has agreed to waive the take or pay liability under the

contract for the year 2015,” he said.

PLL, a joint venture of state-owned Indian Oil Corp. Ltd, GAIL (India) Ltd, Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd

and Bharat Petroleum Corp. Ltd, had started importing LNG from 2004.



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