LNG & Natural Gas News

Oct 26 - China is more than LNG's best hope, it's a microcosm: Russell 

China stands out as a bright spot for oversupplied liquefied natural gas (LNG) markets, but it's much more than just a beacon of demand hope, it's the microcosm of how the global market is likely to develop. China's imports of the super-chilled fuel almost doubled to 2.53 million tonnes in September from the same month in 2015, according to customs data. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 26 - Singapore takes more steps to become LNG trading hub 

Singapore is boosting efforts to establish itself as Asia's liquefied natural gas (LNG) trading hub, looking at third party spot imports and a second LNG terminal, while LNG bunkering services will start next year. The city state, already one of the world's leading oil trading centres, is vying with Tokyo and Shanghai to become Asia's main pricing hub for the emerging LNG market as the fuel moves away from being traded almost exclusively through long-term contracts. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 21 - NBP bulls in charge but front-summer momentum wanes (ICIS)
- Technical analysis of ICIS data suggests that the bulls remain in control of the NBP Summer ’17 contract but that upwards momentum has fallen in recent sessions, indicating a possible plateau or downturn. The NBP is one of Europe’s largest gas markets and is a key price driver for numerous European gas and power markets. NBP prices can influence other gas hubs including the Dutch TTF and German NCG markets along with British, French and Dutch power markets. The NBP is also the key reference price for LNG in Europe.
- The graphs demonstrate the price of the contract since 30 June 2016; its simple moving average (SMA); upper and lower bollinger bands; moving average convergence-divergence (MACD) and signal line; and traded volume on the contract on a given day.

Through July and August, the contract was caught in a steady downward trend, drifting between its lower bollinger band and simple moving average (SMA) a number of times as volatility slowly left the market.
On 22 August, the MACD line crossed below the signal line, typically a sell signal for a trader as it suggests that the market has entered a bearish trend.
Summer ’17 then started to stage a recovery in value from 12 September, after bottoming out at 35.45p/th three days prior.
The uptick became a trend, rather than a correction, when the contract’s MACD crossed above its corresponding signal line on 15 August – typically interpreted as a buy signal for traders.
Four days later, the contract broke above its SMA, further cementing its bullish trend.
The MACD line leapt above the zero line on 23 August, another technical buying signal.
These three indicators helped to propel Summer ‘17 to life-of-contract highs, climbing 21% in a little over a month
- Flagging momentum
The MACD histogram, which measures the difference between the MACD line and signal line, peaked at 0.5071 on 6 October when the contract was at its most bullish. By 19 October, the histogram had dropped by over 50% to 0.2242. This indicates the upwards momentum in the market is beginning to wane as the MACD threatens to cross below the signal line.
At 1.429, the MACD is just 8% below its 1.55 high point during its last bullish run in July 2016, which preceded the contract’s summer down-trend.
A falling histrogram, as the MACD approaches a historical peak, are indicative of a market where the bulls are running out of steam.

Oct 20 - Asian LNG demand lifts spot prices as winter approaches (ICIS)
- A number of buyers across East Asia and India have tapped the LNG spot market causing marginal supply to appear increasingly scarce as the northern hemisphere winter approaches.
- The ICIS November East Asia Index (EAX) was assessed for the final time at $6.45/MMBtu on 14 October, having risen $1.06/MMBtu since becoming the front month on 16 September. The second front-month contract, the December EAX, closed at $6.80/MMbtu, representing a $1.25/MMBtu rise.
- Renewed appetite from South Korean state-owned buyer KOGAS has been key in the upward price direction. Four nuclear units at Wolsong in South Korea went offline following earthquakes that hit the country in mid-September. Korea was deprived of more than a quarter of its 22GW nuclear power capacity on the back of a long and hot summer of heightened electricity demand for air conditioning.
- As Korean gas inventories dwindled, KOGAS went from being relatively long in LNG to short, and after having nominated to take as many incremental deliveries through its long-term contracts as commercially viable, the company issued its third short-term buy tender of the past five weeks on 12 October. KOGAS had awarded three cargoes through the first tender in mid-September and issued a subsequent tender for five shipments in late September. Its latest tender, which is expected to be awarded by 27 October, seeks four deliveries from November 2016 to February 2017.

Oct 18 - Even at $100 for coal, Asia's LNG industry struggles to compete

The liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector has watched with joy how thermal coal prices have soared this year, hoping that the unexpected spike would at last make LNG price competitive in Asia. Although much cleaner than coal in terms of pollution and carbon emissions, natural gas has struggled to make inroads in Asia's power generation mix since it is typically more expensive to produce electricity from gas than coal. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 13 - South Korean shipbuilders eyed for LNG carriers deal worth $3.8 billion

A little-known investment company said it intends to order up to 20 liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers, probably from South Korean shipbuilders. The contracts would be worth as much as $3.8 billion, two people with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters. CBI Energy and Chemical, which is controlled by Australian and Canadian investors and has offices in Hong Kong, also said in a statement to Reuters that it would be seeking to buy floating LNG production and import facilities as part of an ambitious plan for Africa and Asia. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 07 - LNG prices enjoying seasonal gains, but joy may be short-lived: Russell 

It's around about now that liquefied natural gas (LNG) spot prices usually start rising in Asia ahead of winter demand, and this year looks set to hold to the pattern, although any relief for producers is likely to be short-lived. While the LNG market is heading for structural oversupply next year, and for several years thereafter, there are several short-term factors that have been supporting prices, and should continue to do so for a little while. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 06 - Qatar diverts LNG from Britain to more lucrative Asia 

Britain's top sea-borne gas supplier Qatar has stopped sending new shipments for several weeks as restocking demand from long-standing customer South Korea drains supply. The drought underscores the precariousness of Britain's access to liquefied natural gas (LNG) supplies from the world's biggest producer at a time when UK gas traders deal with volatile markets and the approach of peak winter demand.

Sep 28 - Britain's first U.S. shale gas delivery arrives in stormy Scotland 

Britain's first shale gas delivery from the United States sailed into a heated European political debate on fracking on Tuesday and immediately ran into its first practical problem - the Scottish weather.The huge "Ineos Insight" tanker had entered the Firth of Forth at sunrise, a lone Scots piper playing on its bow, as it headed for the Grangemouth refinery, west of Edinburgh. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 27 - Japan's Jera sells first LNG resale cargo to South Korea 

Japan's Jera Co, the world's biggest importer of liquefied natural gas (LNG), has re-sold an LNG cargo to South Korea, marking the first actual delivery to a customer outside of Japan, a crucial step toward expanding its trading business. Jera agreed to resell about 60,000 tonnes of LNG to the Gwangyang terminal in South Korea for December delivery to a storage tank that trading house Itochu Corp has leased from Posco, Jera's Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Fuel Transactions Officer, Hiroki Sato, told Reuters in an interview on Monday. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 21 - Bearish European gas hubs keep re-load option open (ICIS)
- Stronger bearish pressure at European gas hubs has trumped world-wide falls in spot LNG prices allowing LNG re-exports in an already well-supplied LNG market.
- The ICIS October South America Index (SAX) was assessed for the final time at $5.31/MMBtu on 15 September, having fallen $0.33/MMBtu since becoming the front month on 16 August. It went from being assessed at a premium to a discount to both the ICIS East Asia Index (EAX) and Middle East North Africa Index (MENAX).
- Only gas hubs in Europe fell by more providing scope for LNG traders to still re-export at a profit, particularly to destinations in the Middle East. Volatility in month-ahead European gas, as well as LNG markets, saw the MENAX premium to the ICIS Northwest Europe Index (NEX) range from $1.23/MMBtu to $1.77/MMBtu.
- Supply from most LNG production centres around the world held steady, while plants in Indonesia, Australia, and Papua New Guinea held tenders over the period to sell excess into the October market. A force majeure on feedgas supplies to the Nigeria LNG plant since 10 August was lifted on 7 September. Data from ICIS LNG Edge shows that, as of 16 September, four more cargoes have been loaded from Nigeria within the last 15 days compared to the previous 15 days. Despite lengthening supply and spot prices falling, LNG traders in Europe could still consider Europe as an economically competitive source of supply in the October market. With the Dutch TTF October ’16 contract trading around €12.00/MWh ($3.95/MMBtu), at least one trader has probed the shipping market to re-export from northern Europe in early October.

Sep 14 - Front-month trade lifts TTF gas volumes as NBP slumps
A seven-month high in traded volume on the TTF contract for delivery in September helped to lift total trade at the Dutch hub in August. TTF trade during August was up 22% year-on-year, and was 42% higher than at the British NBP hub. This is part of a wider trend which has seen the Dutch hub overtake its British rival to become the most liquid gas hub in Europe.

Sep 14 - Pipeline exports to Europe dip due to low Norwegian flows
Pipeline gas imports to Europe fell to a 14-month low in August, driven almost entirely by reduced supply from Norway. According to data collated by ICIS, just shy of 23 billion cubic metres (bcm) of Russian, Norwegian and North African gas was shipped to the continent in August, down by 1.6% year on year and by nearly 5% compared to the previous month.

Sep 14 - Ukraine may decommission part of gas network on lower Russian supplies - paper 

Ukraine may decommission part of its gas transit system due to a sharp fall in the amount of Russian gas being pumped to Europe via Ukraine, the head of Ukraine's gas transport monopoly Ihor Prokopiv was quoted on Tuesday as saying. Around 40 percent of Russia's gas exports to Europe currently pass through Ukraine but several new gas pipelines elsewhere and an uncertain future for Ukrainian gas deals with Russia could leave Ukrainian transit pipelines redundant within a few years. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 09 - Bloated, glutted and static, Asia's LNG market keeps disappointing

The liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry has morphed from energy's golden child to black sheep in the last two years, with demand slumping just as supplies soar.While low prices are a boon for consumers, the lack of demand and lowered revenue will threaten the efforts of companies to recoup investments in LNG export terminals in the United States and Australia. Further, future projects will have a hard time gaining approval. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 05 - Woodside buys half of BHP's stake in Australian gas fields for $400 mln

Woodside Petroleum has agreed to buy half of BHP Billiton's stake in the Scarborough area gas fields off Western Australia for $400 million, in a move that could help speed a decision to develop the long delayed project.The sale fits with BHP's effort to shift its petroleum focus to the United States and more on oil, while boosting Woodside's resources without any exploration spending at a time when weak oil and gas prices have dented earnings. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 02 - Argentina reworks LNG import deals as mild weather hits demand 

Argentina is diverting or cancelling incoming shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG) after mild late winter temperatures curbed fuel demand and forced state-run buyer Enarsa to rework some deals. South America's biggest LNG importer launched back-to-back tenders in June and July after a cold start to winter, lining up dozens of cargoes at bargain prices as global output continued to outpace demand.

Aug 30 - Australian state to permanently ban onshore gas fracking 

The state of Victoria plans to ban shale and coal seam gas fracking in what would be Australia's first permanent ban on unconventional gas drilling, citing the concerns of farmers and potential health and environment risks.However the government left the door open to allowing onshore conventional gas drilling after 2020.Click here to read full stories.

Aug 15 - Australia's gas paradox: supply crunch looms despite rich reserves 

Australia is on track to become the world's biggest liquefied natural gas (LNG) exporter by 2019 yet faces a looming shortage at home as states restrict new drilling onshore and cash-strapped oil and gas companies cut spending. The paradox has led to urgent calls from everyone from Australia's energy minister to petroleum giant Royal Dutch Shell and big industrial users like Dow Chemical and fertiliser group Incitec Pivot for action to spur new supply. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 03 - Sinopec to sell gas pipeline stake to no more than 15 investors 

China's Sinopec Corp will sell a stake in the Sichuan-East China gas pipeline to no more than 15 investors, the company said in an announcement in Beijing Equity Exchange on Wednesday. Sinopec, the country's second-largest oil and gas group, said late on Tuesday that it would sell half of its premium natural gas pipeline business to investors. 

Aug 01 - First U.S. LNG shipment goes to China as Panama Canal opens markets -data 

The first liquefied natural gas vessel from the lower 48 U.S. states is on its way to China, according to a Reuters interactive map on Friday, the latest sign that the expanded Panama Canal is allowing U.S. exports to reach the world's top LNG buyers in Asia. Royal Dutch Shell's Maran Gas Apollonia loaded up with gas at Cheniere Energy Inc's Sabine Pass LNG export plant in Louisiana, the map showed. It passed through the canal earlier this week and was moving northwest up the west coast of Mexico on Friday afternoon.

Jul 22 - Chevron's giant Australia LNG plant facing union calls for safety checks 

Forced to shut its $54 billion Gorgon liquefied natural gas (LNG) export plant twice in its first five months, Chevron Corp now faces calls from union officials for a probe into the site's safety. Chevron denies there have been any safety breaches at the plant but is under pressure to resolve problems that have limited exports to just two cargoes since starting operations in March. click here .

Jul 21 - Oil Search bows to ExxonMobil in battle for InterOil 

Australia's Oil Search Ltd has cleared the way for ExxonMobil Corp to take over InterOil Corp for $2.2 billion, giving the U.S. giant access to a rich new gas field to expand its exports from Papua New Guinea. The move could lead ExxonMobil and French giant Total SA to tie together their competing gas interests in the South Pacific nation, cooperating to reduce costs as they battle cheap oil and liquefied natural gas (LNG) prices. click here .

Jul 18 - U.S. gas prices must rise to rebalance market: Kemp

The U.S. natural gas market is on an unsustainable course as low prices stimulate strong growth in consumption while production is flat or falling. U.S. power producers burned a record amount of gas last winter despite mild weather as cheap prices and stricter environmental regulations encouraged a shift away from coal. click here.

Jul 15 - ExxonMobil launches bidding war for InterOil in PNG gas push 

ExxonMobil Corp has made a bid worth at least $2.2 billion for InterOil Corp and its stake in a rich Papua New Guinea gasfield, winning the support of its target and topping an offer from Australia's Oil Search Ltd. The bid pits ExxonMobil, the world's biggest oil company, against Total SA, which is backing Oil Search, as the French giant looks to push forward with its planned Papua LNG project to rival ExxonMobil's existing PNG LNG project. click here.

Jul 01 - California probes oil refiners for gas price manipulation 

California has issued subpoenas to Valero Energy Corp and Chevron Corp as part of a probe into whether oil refiners in the state have manipulated gasoline prices since 2014, the companies said on Thursday. Shell, Tesoro Corp, Phillips 66, and Exxon Mobil and other major refiners are also under investigation, the Wall Street Journal first reported on Thursday, citing people familiar with the matter.  click here.

Jun 30 - China needs market reform, emission rules to boost gas use-industry 

China needs broader market reform and tighter emission regulations to promote natural gas as the most effective fuel to cut its emissions, industry executives said on Wednesday. The world's largest energy user's ambition to spur gas use is hitting snags because of an inflexible pricing mechanism, lack of market access by independent players and infrastructure limitations, they said. click here.

Jun 29 - Fire at Mississippi gas plant halts two U.S. Gulf Coast platforms 

At least two offshore oil platforms halted operations on Tuesday in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico after a fire at a natural gas processing plant in Mississippi shut a crucial pipeline that brings output onshore, several companies said. The fire at the Enterprise Products Partners LP plant in Pascagoula was brought under control, but officials were forced to close the 225-mile (362 km) Destin gas pipeline system that can carry 1.2 billion cubic feet per day from offshore fields to Pascagoula.  click here.

Jun 21 - How gas could warm relations between Israel and Turkey 

On the sidelines of a nuclear security summit in Washington in March, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan held a private meeting with Israel's energy minister, Yuval Steinitz. It was the highest level contact between Israel and Turkey since diplomatic relations broke down six years ago after Israeli forces raided a Turkish ship bound for Gaza, killing 10 Turkish activists. The meeting, which lasted 20 to 30 minutes and whose details have not been previously disclosed, discussed the war in Syria, Iran's presence there, terrorism – and natural gas. That last item is a key driver of efforts to forge a rapprochement between Israel and Turkey: At stake are reserves of natural gas worth hundreds of billions of dollars under the waters of Israel and Cyprus. To exploit them Israel will likely require the cooperation of Turkey. click here.

Jun 15 - India seeks better LNG deal by teaming up with South Korea and Japan 

Energy-hungry India has restarted talks on a liquefied natural gas (LNG) purchasing alliance with Japan and South Korea and may also include China as Asian demand for the fuel grows. "For the next two to three decades, gas is going to be a major part of the energy basket for Asian energy consumers," Dharmendra Pradhan, Indian minister of petroleum and natural gas told reporters in Mumbai on Tuesday.  click here.

Jun 09 - No new Australian LNG projects doesn't mean no new LNG: Russell 

Conventional wisdom in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector is that no new projects will be built for several years, given the vast cost can't be reconciled with the current low prices. This view has led some in the industry to predict that the market will flip back to a structural shortage sometime in the early to mid-2020s, once again sending prices soaring as new supply takes so long to be built and become operational. click here.

Jun 09 - Cheap Canadian gas imports may prolong U.S. energy industry's rout 

U.S. utilities and merchants are embarking on their biggest buying spree for Canadian natural gas since the start of the U.S. shale boom, taking advantage of record low prices and raising concerns about the U.S. industry's deepening crisis. Traders have been scooping up more gas from Canada, the world's fifth largest producer, in recent months after prices at the AECO hub in Alberta sank to a big discount to the U.S. benchmark. click here.

Jun 07 - Saudi Aramco could import gas to boost use in energy mix - min
Saudi Aramco could invest in importing gas into the kingdom, but the priority would be on finding new sources of gas domestically through exploration, Saudi Arabia's energy minister said on Tuesday. Even though it is the world's largest oil exporter, Saudi Arabia has struggled to keep pace with domestic gas demand in recent years as increased use from industry and power generation put pressure on supplies.click here.

Jun 02 - Cheap gas fuels emerging markets’ new-found appetite for LNG
Cheap gas is tempting out new importers in Africa and South America, helping stave off a deeper price rout hurting producers' bottom lines. A near 80 percent drop in spot liquefied natural gas (LNG)prices since February 2014 comes as Asian demand falls and competing new supply from the United States and Australia attracts poorer countries for long shut out of the gas trade. click here.

May 26 - LNG industry tension to rise as price breaks link to crude oil: Russell
The price of spot cargoes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Asia has broken its long-standing link to crude oil this year, a development likely to fuel tensions in an already unsettled market. Spot LNG was assessed at $4.65 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) in the week to May 20, which is 35 percent down from $6.90 at the end of last year, although slightly higher than the low so far this year of $4, reached in mid-April. click here.

May 25 - Record U.S. LPG exports to Asia hit naphtha when it's already down
Asian petrochemical makers will use around twice as much liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) in June as in the previous two months, undercutting already weak margins being earned on traditional chemical feedstock naphtha, trade sources said. U.S. exports of LPG to Asia are hitting their highest rates ever this year and exacerbating the usual seasonal May-July pick-up in use of the fuel in cracking plants. click here.

May 20 - Oil Search boosts LNG push in PNG with $2.2 bln InterOil bid
Australia's Oil Search Ltd agreed a $2.2 billion deal to acquire InterOil Corp on Friday, aiming to pave the way for two rival liquefied natural gas projects led by global majors to work together in Papua New Guinea. In the face of weak oil prices, PNG is considered one of the best locations for LNG projects, thanks to its high quality gas and low costs. click here.

May 19 - Australia's Gorgon LNG export facility restarting operations - Chevron
Chevron has begun to restart its Gorgon liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility in Australia following an unplanned shutdown in April, the U.S. energy major said. "We confirm start-up activities are underway on Gorgon train one with a plan to safely resume production in the coming weeks," a Chevron spokesman told Reuters on Wednesday. click here.

May 13 - Macquarie advises Origin to weigh spin-off after LNG project done - sources
Australia's Origin Energy hired Macquarie Capital to advise on a potential spin-off of its gas production businesses, including a $25 billion liquefied natural gas plant, two sources familiar with the matter said on Friday. Macquarie has advised that any spin-off should occur only after Origin's debt-saddled Australia Pacific LNG project is in full production, due in 2017, said one of the sources who was briefed on the advice. Following project completion, guarantees to lenders will be satisfied, making the split easier. click here.

May 12 - Oil refiners, gas producers face higher costs from climate laws - report  
Oil refiners and gas producers could face higher production costs if countries use a high carbon price to follow through promises made at last year's global climate summit in Paris, research showed on Thursday. The landmark Paris Agreement was a commitment by nearly 200 countries to cut greenhouse gas emissions from 2020 with the aim of limiting the rise in the global average temperature to less than 2 degrees Celsius. click here.

Apr 18 - Chevron puts Myanmar gas block stakes worth $1.3 bln up for sale -sources
U.S. oil and gas major Chevron Corp has put all of its Myanmar gas block stakes up for sale, which at a combined likely valuation of $1.3 billion, would be the biggest deal involving Myanmar assets to date, financial sources familiar with the matter said. The sale, part of Chevron's efforts to preserve cash and retreat from non-core assets in the wake of sliding oil prices, is seen as setting the tone for future deals in a country that is opening up for business after historic elections last year. click here.

Mar 15 - Debt deadlines loom for SandRidge, Venoco and Energy XXI
The first major upstream oil and gas bankruptcy filing of the year could occur this week as SandRidge Energy Inc, Venoco Inc and Energy XXI Ltd reach the end of grace periods following millions in missed interest payments.The three oil and gas exploration and production companies with operations across the United States, said they would skip a total of $44.2 million in interest payments last month, as they negotiated debt restructurings with creditors.  click here.

Feb 29 - LNG needs new pricing, rules to realise its golden age: Russell
In theory these should be great days for the liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry as new plants are commissioned to supply the clean-burning fuel to energy hungry markets across rapidly developing Asia. But in reality the industry is facing uncertainty as low prices damage the economics of multi-billion dollar investments and the expected demand growth fails to materialise. As is normally the case in complex markets, there is no single villain. Rather there are several factors hurting the industry's fortunes and casting doubts over whether natural gas and LNG will ever see the golden age predicted a few years ago.click here.

Feb 26 - As U.S. shale exports begin, Australia readies world's costliest gas project
The timing couldn't be worse for the first production of natural gas from Australia's $54 billion Gorgon project - the world's most expensive. Prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) have collapsed, global demand is faltering and the first of what is likely to be a wave of competing shipments has just set sail from the unlikeliest of exporters, the United States. click here.

Feb 25 - U.S. exports first shale gas as LNG tanker sails from Sabine Pass terminal
The United States has exported its first liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo from the lower 48 states, after a tanker set sail from Cheniere Energy's Sabine Pass export terminal in Louisiana. The Asia Vision LNG tanker left the dock at the Sabine Pass terminal at 0139 GMT (7.39 p.m. on Wednesday local time), shipping data on Reuters showed. click here.

Feb 25 - U.S. commodity agency advised to drop plan to limit futures contracts - NYT
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission's advisory committee has recommend the regulator end its plans to limit the number of futures contracts a trader can hold on certain commodities, including oil and natural gas, the New York Times reported. The CFTC Energy and Environmental Markets Advisory Committee, which largely includes representatives from the energy and trading industries, is to release a report on Thursday saying the regulator should not make the proposed limits final and that it finds "scant evidence" they are necessary, the newspaper said late Wednesday. click here.

Feb 15 - Noble Group's LNG traders leaving to join Glencore – sources
Three liquefied natural gas (LNG) traders at Asia's biggest commodity trade house, Noble Group Ltd, including two co-heads of the team, are leaving to join rival trader Glencore, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.The sources said that Noble will continue to trade LNG, having restarted its London-based trading desk in 2014. Noble will still have about five people involved in the LNG business. click here.

Feb 10 - El Nino unites unlikely bedfellows in UBS play: cocoa and natural gas
Natural gas investors, used to trading on big freezes and scorching temperatures across the United States that can whipsaw prices, may have to extend their weather watch to west Africa if the latest trading call by UBS Group AG catches on. In an unlikely pairing of two vastly different markets, the bank has launched a new relative value trading strategy: go long cocoa and short U.S. natural gas. click here.

Jan 18 - LNG looks poised to follow crude oil's plunge: Russell
In contrast to the carnage in crude oil markets, liquefied natural gas (LNG) prices in Asia have enjoyed relative stability for the past three months, but it's unlikely the calm will persist much longer. Spot Asian LNG prices ended last week at $5.60 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), about 28 percent below the recent peak of $7.80 reached on Nov. 22. In contrast, Brent crude oil has dropped 46 percent from its recent peak in early October to trade currently around $28.55 a barrel. click here.

Jan 12 - PetroChina-Chevron sour gas project begins production in China
PetroChina and Chevron began production at an onshore natural gas field in China's southwest at the end of 2015, PetroChina's parent said on Monday, after years of delays. The Luojiazhai field, whose 'A' well began operating on Dec. 30, has an annual production capacity of 3 billion cubic metres of gas, the state-controlled China National Petroleum Corporation said in a statement on its website. click here.

Dec 21 - LNG shippers brace for wave of consolidation as freight rates sink
Shippers who ply the seas to deliver liquefied natural gas in massive tankers are likely to face a wave of consolidation and asset sales, with freight rates plunging as a growing fleet clashes with tepid demand. Companies that manage to weather the shakeout in one of the key sectors in the global shipping industry should be in a prime position, however, to benefit from a string of new LNG projects expected to start trickling online by the end of next year. click here.

Dec 03 - LNG buyers seize upper hand in global gas contract reviews
Global oversupply and sliding prices are pushing big natural gas buyers of LNG from India to China to look at reworking long-term agreements in what was for long a producer-controlled market.Banking on a tide of new liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply from the United States, Australia and Russia hitting markets through 2021, importers are seizing the chance to wring concessions from existing producers wary of losing market share. click here.

Dec 02 - America's biggest gas field finally succumbs to downturn
The drilling rigs are gone from the hills surrounding this Pennsylvania town of 30,000. The hotels and bars are quieter too, no longer packed with the workers who flocked in their thousands to America's newest and biggest gas field.The drilling boom of the past seven years is over, even though thousands of existing wells in the Marcellus region still produce a fifth of U.S. natural gas supply. Now, exclusive data made available to Reuters points to a slump in drilling that could hit production next year, defying government and industry expectations of a further rise in output. click here.

Nov 27 - Saudi Aramco to invest more in Indonesia's oil and gas sector
Saudi Aramco is looking for further investment opportunities in Indonesia's downstream refining and petrochemicals industry, the company's CEO said on Thursday, after initiating a $5.5 billion project to upgrade the country's largest refinery.The Saudi Aramco CEO's comments are positive for Indonesian President Joko Widodo's efforts to attract investment after a clean-up of the country's oil and gas sector that followed a series of scandals.  click here.

Nov 25 - Cheap coal threatens LNG's toehold in fast expanding Philippines 
The Philippines is set to import liquefied natural gas (LNG) for the first time next year as it bids to replace fast-fading local gas supplies, but cheap coal is blowing off course Manila's vow to lift the use of cleaner fuels.With 100 million people and one of the world's fastest growing economies, the country aims to double its power generation capacity by 2030, hoping to put an end to daily blackouts that crippled its economy in the 1990s. click here.

Nov 20 - In Shell-BG review, China wants concessions on huge gas deals
Chinese regulators vetting Royal Dutch Shell's  proposed merger with BG Group  are pressing the Anglo-Dutch company to sweeten long-term gas supply contracts in a move that could cast new doubt over the near-term benefits of the $70 billion tie-up. For China, the opportunity to re-negotiate existing liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply contracts with Shell, which combined with BG would supply around 30 percent of its imports by 2017, comes at an ideal time because the world's top energy consumer faces a large surfeit over the next five years. click here.

Nov 17 - Warm weather worsens glut of US gas, heating oil: Kemp
Unusually mild weather across the United States this autumn has sharply reduced heating demand and contributed to the substantial oversupply of both natural gas and heating oil. Heating demand has been 27 percent lower than the long-term average so far this heating season according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Temperatures have been above normal every week since the beginning of September and heating demand has been correspondingly lower than usual. click here.

Nov 05 - New buyers seen fueling Asia Pacific oil and gas M&A
A new breed of buyers and a handful of cashed-up energy firms are set to pounce on oil and gas producers and assets in the Asia Pacific next year, as a prolonged plunge in oil prices deepens the pain of an industry loaded with debt.Some $14 billion worth of deals have already been launched in Australia this year, but with oil prices forecast to stay around $50 a barrel for at least another year, companies are paring back the value of their assets and those short of funds or struggling to pay down debt may look to sell, bankers say. click here

Nov 04 - Natural gas losing its shine as Asia holds faith in coal power
The shine is coming off once bright prospects for natural gas as the future fossil fuel of choice in Asia as power companies in India and Southeast Asia tap abundant and cheap domestic coal resources to generate electricity.Asian loyalty to coal is shrinking the space available for natural gas just as supplies are ramping up after massive investments in U.S. and Australian output. Demand growth for natural gas is also slowing in top energy consumer China, further dampening the fuel's prospects. click here.

Oct 30 - LNG glut to steal coal market share
A wave of liquefied natural gas due to hit energy markets over the next couple of years is expected to displace tens of millions of tonnes coal demand globally, helped by government initiatives to move away from polluting power generation. Both coal and LNG are oversupplied after higher prices during the past decade triggered investments in new projects and expansion plans. At the same time the gap between their prices has narrowed as LNG has become more competitive, particularly where governments penalise coal via taxes or emissions trading schemes. click here.

Oct 28 - Coming LNG wave more likely to head to Europe than China: Russell
What's well known is that a wave of new liquefied natural gas is about swamp already well-supplied markets, what's less known is how exactly these new cargoes will be absorbed. The consensus assumption has always been that China would soak up vast quantities of the super-chilled fuel, driven by rising energy demand and the need to switch away from more polluting coal. click here.

Oct 27 - Singapore to liberalize gas market to bolster Asia LNG trading hub plans
Singapore plans to establish a domestic natural gas trading market to help support plans to become a centre for trading liquefied natural gas and take advantage of the growing importance of the fuel in Asia's energy markets. Singapore, already a global oil trading hub, is aiming to take advantage of rising LNG supplies in the region, particularly from Australia, and an increasing numbers of buyers especially in China, but also India and other parts of Asia. click here.

Oct 23 - Singapore Exchange eyeing Asian LNG benchmark
Singapore Exchange is planning to create an Asian benchmark for liquefied natural gas and break a decade-long reliance on oil-linked pricing, hoping to take a greater role in an expanding spot market, a senior official said. Spot LNG trading in Asia is set to rise as a wave of new supply comes online, but participants have few options to hedge risks amid a lack of a liquid derivatives market. click here.

Oct 09 - Amid commodity crisis, LPG emerges as accidental bright-spot
Liquefied Petroleum Gas, long a niche product used by the poor to cook and the rich to barbecue, has become a rare bright spot amid a broad commodities rout, riding on the wave of strong economic growth in India and parts of Southeast Asia. LPG is best known to consumers as propane or butane used in heating appliances and vehicles. But it is also used in the petrochemicals industry and the electricity sector, acting as a replacement for diesel in generators and power stations. click here.

Oct 02 - Iran invites foreign firms to develop its oil, gas industry (Reuters)
Iran is inviting foreign investors to actively develop its energy industry after sanctions are expected to ease in 2016, under a nuclear deal between Iran and six global powers, deputy Oil Minister Rokneddin Javadi told Reuters on Thursday. "We welcome all oil companies, including the Americans, that meet Islamic Republic’s requirements to invest in Iran. We welcome competition among foreign oil companies," Javadi said in a telephone interview from Tehran.

Sep 07 - Gazprom seals big gas deals in Europe despite Ukraine crisis (Reuters)
Russia's Gazprom  has bolstered its industrial presence in the heart of Europe with two major gas deals that were announced on Friday despite ongoing tensions with Moscow over the conflict in eastern Ukraine. The first of the deals, an asset swap with German chemicals group BASF  that gives Russia greater access to gas trading and storage in Germany, was a surprise as the companies had abandoned it only nine months ago, citing a "difficult political environment".