Naik presses RasGas to lower price ceiling for LNG

Vol 6, PW 22 (15 Jan 03) News in Brief

RasGas of Qatar is under pressure to further lower the ceiling at which it prices LNG for Dahej.

Discussions about price dominated meetings last week between oil minister Ram Naik and visiting Qatar energy minister Abdullah Bin Hammed Al Attiya. Petronet-LNG can't finalise gas sales purchase agreements with BPCL, IOC and GAIL because they feel the present ceiling at $24 a barrel is still too high.

In turn theyhavent signed a single contract with consumers. "We feel the ceiling price should be $20 a barrel," one of the offtakers tells this report.

"RasGas has no choice now. The LNG market is a buyers' market.

If the contract is not reworked we won't be able to sign sales agreements with customers." Earlier agreement set $16 as a floor price.