CNPC's natural gas supply rises 15% from a year ago by April
China National Petroleum Corp’s natural gas supply has risen over 15 percent from a year ago by April amid robust growth in demand, the company said today.
The oil and gas giant has been expanding gas production, distribution and storage “as its domestic demand has been rising since the first quarter,” CNPC said on its official website.
The company didn't unveil specific figures on the demand, but said the rise in demand was due to falling prices of natural gas from the start of the year. In contrast prices of its substitutes such as coal have risen.
The most traded natural gas contract for June delivery, however, closed at US$2.85 per million British thermal unit, down 21.5 percent from the highest level of US$3.63 per million British thermal unit since the start of the year at the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Meanwhile the average price of steam coal domestically was 612 yuan (US$96) per ton by May 11, up 21 yuan per ton from the week prior and up 46 yuan per ton from a month ago, according to sxcoal.com, a coal industry consultancy.
To ensure sufficient supply "in winter time when demand peaks,” CNPC has raised domestic commercial gas production by 2 percent annually over the first four months to around 30.5 billion cubic meters, while its import of gas from overseas has surged 28.9 percent from a year ago.
CNPC has also been expanding its distribution network by accelerating construction of gas pipelines connecting China and Russia.
The company’s gas storage has also risen 32.6 percent annually to 1.49 billion cubic meters by April, “which is to help us get ready in case there is shortage of supply in winter.”
In mid-December China’s liquefied natural gas prices grew 6.4 percent when demand surged amid the country's rapid shift to cleaner energy from coal, which prompted oil and gas giants such as CNPC to increase gas storage and supply significantly.