Pakistan Has Secured LNG Cargoes from Qatar: Minister

Pakistan has secured liquefied natural gas cargoes from Qatar at competitive prices, Federal Minister for Energy, Hammad Azhar, said.

“We have got most LNG cargoes in line for November, December and January period.” Azhar told a national daily. “Some of the import shipments are from the new Qatar agreement at 10.2 percent of Brent.”

However, the energy minister did not confirm the number of liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargoes the government has purchased.

Pakistan has been struggling to secure LNG shipments in the past few months as the global energy crunch has forced prices to skyrocket. According to Reuters, the weekly spot price of LNG for delivery to North Asia surged to $38.50 per million British thermal units (mmBtu) in the seven days to 15 October.

The country was not able to receive any bids for a tender seeking eight LNG cargoes for delivery over December to January.

However, the energy minister was confident that the government would meet energy demand during the upcoming winter season.

Meanwhile, an industry official told The News that Pakistan needed to look toward alternative fuel sources. “As [the] country is heading towards a potentially severe LNG crunch in a couple of months, there is dire need to aggressively source natural gas from wherever [it] deem[s] feasible.” said an industry official.

Pakistan is expected to experience another gas shortage this winter, following three consecutive years of supply constraints. As the winter season commences, consumers’ demand for gas and heating will rise, and they will start to use household gas heaters and geysers.

Globally, high gas prices are forcing countries to switch to oil as an energy source. It is expected that Pakistan may also shift toward using furnace oil and coal in power production. Currently, these two commodities are more affordable than LNG.

However, rising global demand for oil is now also driving up prices of the commodity. Brent crude futures are currently trading near $85 per barrel.