India buyers snap up cheap cargoes
Indian utility buyers have stepped up LNG imports, snapping up distressed cargoes for cheap. Coal-to-gas switching allows Indian power generators to absorb a large share of cargoes left uncommitted as the coronavirus dampens demand in China, and analysts see India’s annual LNG imports to rise by up to 15% this year. Ship-tracking data from Refinitiv Eikon shows that India imported some 2.36 million tonnes of LNG in February, which surpassed an earlier record of 2.3 million tons set in October. The low spot prices are creating some downstream demand in India, especially from the city-gas sector and for power generation. Some cargoes headed for China have been diverted to India, and a few bargain-hunting Indian buyers have issued tenders for spot cargoes - some even for several months. Reliance Industries is understood to have issued a tender for five cargoes for April to June delivery, while Gujarat State Petroleum Corp (GSPC) sought nine cargoes for February to April.