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LONDON (ICIS) – European and Asian prices continued to move in tandem to some extent, driven by new supply deals, tighter European supply and new Russian sanctions. 

High European demand has kept European gas prices higher than Asia’s. Europe’s LNG prices mostly remained at a heavy discount to the TTF gas price for June and July deliveries, with limited spot availability at European terminals. 

South and southeast Asian demand picked up, evidenced by a spate of buy tenders in the week. The US signed a new long-term supply deal with southeast Asia. 

Northeast Asian demand could rise in the coming weeks on summer requirements, leading to increased competition for cargoes. 

Tenders 

Thailand’s EGAT issued a one-cargo buy tender to be delivered in June, closing on 16 May. 

PTT also issued a similar buy tender covering four delivery windows in June, closing on 16 May. 

Pakistan LNG has likely awarded its latest 11 May tender to PetroChina, who submitted the lowest offers for two cargoes to Port Qasim terminal in June at $23.96/MMBtu and $22.49/MMBtu. 

While high temperatures have kept India’s demand coming, Indian utility Gail was unlikely to have awarded a 21-23 June delivery tender which closed on 11 May. 

In Northeast Asia, Japanese and Korean buyers are said to be seeking near-term cargoes to meet summer demand. 

Japan’s Hokkaido Electric likely bought a cargo at $20.00-20.50/MMBtu through a tender on 10 May. 

Turkey’s Botas has issued a four cargo buy-tender for delivery from May-August, with offers due on 12 May. This is Botas’ first buy tender since February. 

Price Volatility 

The TTF benchmark remained volatile, with prices averaging around $25/MMBtu as the market continued to react to supply developments. 

The Russian government imposed sanctions on a new list of companies on 11 May that included a consortium partially owned by Gazprom in the Yamal pipeline and various Gazprom Germania subsidiaries in Europe and Singapore. However, the extent of the sanctions and their immediate impact on gas exports to Europe were unclear. 

Earlier in the week, Ukrainian operator GTSOU declared force majeure on the 33mcm/day Sokhranovka transit border point between Russia and Ukraine, driving the TTF higher. 

Infrastructure

Dutch operator Gasunie announced on 10 May that it had signed a five-year contract for the lease of an FSRU from New Fortress Energy. The Golar Igloo was said to be fixed above $150,000/day. The FSRU is expected to arrive at Eemshaven in the Netherlands in August, making it the second FSRU due at the terminal in August. 

This followed the 5 May announcement from Germany’s Uniper that the company has facilitated the charter of two Dynagas-managed FSRUs for the German government. The FSRUs could start-up as soon as 2023. 

Elsewhere, the Karmol LNGT Powership Asia is on its way to Brazil where it is set to become the next import terminal for Ceiba’s LNG project in Protocem. 

Long-Term Supply

US Venture Global has signed two long-term sales and purchase agreements with ExxonMobil for 2mtpa from the Plaquemines and CP2 LNG plants.