India receives first LNG shipment from Qatar

Monday, 26 January 2004, 08:00 Hrs
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DOHA: India has received its first consignment of 138,000 cubic metres of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Qatar under an agreement between the two countries for a 25-year supply.

India's only LNG tanker Disha will load its first cargo at Qatar's Ras Laffan port and depart Tuesday for Petronet LNG's Dahej terminal at Gujarat.

Disha and other LNG tankers would carry about 7.5 million tonnes of Qatari LNG to India per year for 25 years under a sales and purchase agreement.

Dahej terminal's supply of five million tonnes per annum (mtpa) would be predominately supplied by Qatar's Ras Laffan Liquefied Natural Gas Company, (Rasgas).

"The 25-year term agreement for the first five million tonnes tranche of the 7.5 million tonnes per annum supply, has now finally commenced after years of cooperation between Petronet LNG Ltd and RasGas together with our respective Governments' agencies," Qatar's Energy and Industry Minister Abdullah bin Hamad Al Attiyah said Sunday.

He said Ras Laffan drew its LNG supply from Qatar's north field, which contains over 900 trillion cubic feet of gas.

The minister said Qatar viewed India as a country with enormous demand for LNG in the future.

India's petroleum secretary B.K. Chaturvedi said "India joins an elite club of nation who are trading LNG, the fuel of the 21st century. This momentous occasion is symbolic of the deep ties and friendship between Qatar and India and represent the burgeoning partnership between the two countries."

"Our projected requirement for natural gas in 2020 will be around 80 million to 90 million tonnes of gas a year", he said. Even if India develops its own gas resources, it will still need a large amount of gas in the years to come.

He said India's oil industry had seen a dramatic increase in its infrastructure for oil and gas sector.

India's share of natural gas in its energy basket was projected to
grow from a level of eight per cent at present to about 20 per cent by 2025, he added.

"Qatar, because of its huge gas reserves, stable gas industry and strategic location is the natural source of supplies to India," he said.

India was a pioneer in LNG re-gasification in the entire developing world, India's ambassador to Qatar Ranjan Mathai said.

India and Qatar were not only natural partners but their energy partnership is a model of South-South cooperation, he added.

Source: IANS
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