Petronet Issues FM Notice to Qatargas: Press
Petronet LNG, India's biggest LNG importer, has issued a force majeure notice to Qatargas seeking to delay loading of LNG cargoes under long-term deals as India announced a 21-day lockdown to combat the spread of Covid-19, Reuters reported March 25 citing two sources familiar with the matter.
“It seems demand will fall drastically as industrial production is curtailed to a great extent and demand for gas will fall further,” said one of the sources.
On the evening of March 24, India's prime minister Narendra Modi imposed a nationwide lockdown in an attempt to slow the spread of Covid-19. The lockdown came into effect on March 25 and will last till April 14.
Qatar is India’s biggest supplier of LNG. In 1999, Petronet LNG signed a long-term deal to import 7.5mn metric tons/year of LNG from RasGas (merged with Qatargas in January 2018). In late 2015, the two companies agreed on a new deal under which Petronet LNG would import additional 1mn mt/yr of LNG, taking the total annual long-term commitment to 8.5mn mt/yr.
India’s LNG imports had spiked in the last couple of months as prices have been trading at multi-year lows. In January, India’s imports grew by 25% yr/yr and in February they spiked by a whopping 68% yr/yr. The decision by Petronet LNG is expected to impact imports in March and April.