US LNG exports fall in May on lower production and shifting demand trends Ship’s crew


HOUSTON, June 2 (Reuters) – US liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports fell to 7.66 million tonnes in May from a record 8.01 million tonnes in April as plant maintenance slowed production somewhat and weaker prices in Europe inflows into the region and shipping decreased data showed.

According to preliminary shiptracking data from Refinitiv Eikon, US LNG exporters reduced cargoes to Europe last month, while more LNG was shipped to Asia and Latin America, partially offsetting European weakness.

Asian LNG prices for July delivery have recovered from earlier declines, according to consultancy Rystad Energy, making US LNG more attractive to traders and oil majors with access to spot cargo.

But in Europe, the main market for U.S. LNG, last month’s prices at the Dutch title transmission facility have fallen, Rystad noted, creating an opportunity for buyers from other regions to buy U.S. LNG cargoes locally.

US LNG exports to Europe fell to 60.5% in May from 71% of total exports in April, while exports to Asia rose to 14% of total shipments last month from 12% in April. Data showed that Latin American imports of US LNG rose to 11% in May from 6% in April.

The increase in exports to Latin America is due to seasonal increased demand for natural gas for power generation and air conditioning, and in some parts of Latin America for heating as the countries enter the winter period.

The decline in overall U.S. LNG production was due to planned maintenance affecting some large plants, Rystad Energy said.

Planned maintenance work on Sempra’s Cameron LNG Train 2 in late April affected around 300,000 tonnes of supply, with the plant returning to service on May 22nd. Maintenance work on Cheniere Energy’s LNG.A Corpus Christi LNG plant was scheduled to be completed on May 18, but that is the case. Feed gas utilization remained at 1.3 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) on May 20, by comparison with typical values ​​of around 2 bcfd, Rystad noted.

(Reporting by Curtis Williams in Houston; Editing by Susan Fenton)

(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2023.

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