Liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports into Japan, the world’s largest consumer of the chilled fuel, dropped 2 percent in 2016.
Japan imported 83.34 million mt of LNG in 2016, as compared to 85.05 million mt the year before, according to the provisional data released by Japan’s Ministry of Finance.
This is the second drop in Japan’s annual LNG imports since the devastating earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 which caused Japan to shut down its nuclear industry.
Japan paid about $28.9 billion for LNG imports last year as global oil and gas prices fell, down 40 percent from $46.66 billion the country paid for imports in 2015.
According to the data by the Ministry, Japan imported 7.55 million mt of LNG in December, a drop of 6.5 percent as compared to the same month a year ago.
To remind, Japan’s spot price of LNG rose for a third straight month in December to $8.00 per million British thermal units.
The average price of spot LNG contracted in December increased $1 per MMBtu from the previous month and it was the highest since August 2015.
January demand picks up
Demand for LNG for power generation in Japan has risen in January on the back of low winter temperatures.
Japan’s biggest city gas supplier and LNG importer, Tokyo Gas said gas usage in the capital reached just over 60 million cubic metres on Tuesday as average temperatures dropped 2.5 degrees Celsius.
This is a record high daily figure, overtaking the previous record of 59.5 million cubic metres logged on January 20, Tokyo Gas said.
LNG World News Staff