Japanese spot LNG prices for delivered cargoes in April 2020 averaged $3.00 per million British thermal units compared with $5.90 per MMBtu in the same month of 2019 amid the current over-supply and the commercial effects of Covid-19.
The prices are issued by the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry and no spot delivered prices had been given for March 2020 because the minimum number of cargoes were not received for an assessment to be made.
Spot cargoes contrcated in April but not yet delievered were priced for Japan at $2.40 per MMBtu, down from $3.40 per MMBtu in March 2020 and from $5.20 per MMBtu in April 2019, according to the Ministry.
The monthly spot cargo numbers come from the Ministry’s commerce division and are only issued if a minimum number of two trades are recorded.
Overall Japanese LNG imports, declined in March while prices were 13.5 percent lower than a year ago as Australian cargoes increased and Middle East shipments fell.
Japan imported 7.20 million tonnes in March, down 1.2 percent from the 7.29MT received in March 2019.
The volumes amounted to around 100 cargoes. The nation had imported 6.60MT of LNG in February 2020, down 9.6 percent.
The March shipments cost the nation 384.64 billion yen ($3.56 Bln), down from the March 2019 import bill of $444.66Bln yen ($4.12Bln), according to the monthly figures from the Japanese Finance Ministry.
One of the main competitor fuels for power generation, thermal coal, posted a 3.4 percent increase in shipments in March amid the LNG decline.
For the fiscal year, April 2019 to March 2020, the Ministry said LNG imports for the 12 months came to 76.50MT, down 5 percent.
The country’s imports of LNG fell for the whole of last year were 77.32MT, which was 6.7 percent lower than the 82.85MT of shipments that arrived in 2018.