According to The Australian Financial Review, gas buyers on the east coast aren't seeing the benefit of lower spot prices for LNG in Asia, with east coast prices rising in April from March to a level as much as $2 a gigajoule higher than a year ago, the latest analysis of the market by consultancy EnergyQuest has confirmed.
The firm found that short-term prices reached the low $9s a gigajoule range in Queensland and about $10/GJ further south, despite a dip in LNG exports from Gladstone and surplus gas from the north-east flowing south to other states.
There was no LNG was shipped from Queensland to the Asian spot market last month, with all the gas sold under long-term contracts which are based on crude oil prices and are more expensive. Netbacks based on contract LNG prices were therefore higher than the spot "netback".
"This demonstrates the importance of oil prices, more so than LNG spot prices," EnergyQuest said of the influences on gas prices in the eastern states, where manufacturers are being crippled by domestic tariffs that in some cases have trebled in a few years.
EnergyQuest noted an apparent "jump-up" in east coast short-term prices since last July of $1-$2 a gigajoule, coinciding with an average increase in exports from Gladstone and higher oil prices.
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