Europe in focus of US LNG exports with just one cargo headed to China

Monday, 10 May 2021
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The US Department of Energy has just published its latest LNG export data with the average overall price for the six plants rising with deliveries concentrated on Europe, including the UK and the Netherlands, and with just one cargo being shipped to China.

The DoE data also illustrated the large drop in shipments by 30 percent at the turn of the year during the Texas freeze-up when 27 fewer cargoes were delivered in February 2021 compared with January 2021. The data showed that 65 cargoes were lifted in February versus 92 cargoes in January 2021 and 68 shipments in February 2020.

US cargo prices in February jumped to an average of $6.27 per million British thermal units compared with $5.85 per MMBtu in January 2021, at the export points, according to the DoE April 2021 LNG report. The Sabine Pass plant remained the volume leader in February 2021 with its five Trains on stream and supplying 25 cargoes, followed by Cameron 12, Corpus Christi 10, Freeport nine, Cove Point five and Elba Island four.

Competing on price

Shipments from Cameron LNG in Louisiana cost the most at an average of $7.86 per MMBtu, mainly for logistical reasons, displacing Cove Point in Maryland whose normally highest priced cargoes came in at 6.81 per MMBtu, down from $6.82 per MMBtu in January 2021.

The average prices for each of the four other plants (from the export point) from highest to lowest in February 2021 were: Elba Island in Georgia $6.78 per MMBtu (no cargoes shipped in January), Freeport LNG (Texas) $6.08 per MMBtu ($5.84) Corpus Christi (Texas) $5.81 per MMBtu ($6.27) and Sabine Pass (Louisiana) $5.66 per MMBtu ($5.42 per MMBtu).

Notable cargoes shipped from the facilities on the Gulf Coast included the one cargo from China on the 159,800 cubic metres capacity “Maran Gas Delphi” lifted from the Corpus Christi plant of Cheniere Energy.

Cheniere’s Sabine Pass deliveries included one cargo on the 135,240 cubic metres capacity vessel “Cadiz Knutsen” split between the Caribbean nations of the Dominican Republic and Jamaica. Seven Sabine Pass shipments were unloaded at import facilities in the UK and some other destination countries included Poland and Lithuania and two cargoes wwere sent to Mexico.

Asia supplies

Freeport LNG cargoes were delivered to long-term contract destinations such as South Korea on the 180,000 cubic metres capacity vessel “Prism Brilliance” and to Japan on the 174,000 cubic metres capacity carrier “Diamond Gas Metropolis”. Other Freeport destinations included two cargoes for Turkey and one each for France and Spain. Elba Island cargo recipients included Poland, the Netherlands and France. 

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