Over the first seven months of the year, Japanese LNG imports have been down y/y by 0.83 Mt (-1.6%). The reduction in imports driven by an overall milder Q1 13 and the return to service of two coal-fired generation plants. July imports were slightly up on summer peak demand.
South Korean LNG takes have been strong all year, with the power sector being a big reason for that increase. Over the first seven months of 2013, South Korean takes are up some 2.67 Mt (13%) y/y, registering increases in all months except for February and July. July takes are moderately down 0.33 Mt (-12%) y/y due to gas imported at the end of June and that was in storage tanks at the start of the month.
China's gas imports have been strong so far in 2013, with LNG imports up in every month through July and takes over the first seven months up 1.68 Mt (21%). We note that the smallest y/y increments have been seen in June and July (up only 55 thousand tonnes y/y across the two months), given similar weather to last summer.
Indian LNG takes remain disappointing, with June LNG takes down again y/y (-0.26 Mt, -24% y/y), taking H1 13 imports down by 1.16 Mt (-15.7%) y/y. The reductions in LNG imports in H1 13 come against a background of increases in overall power demand, increases in thermal generation, but a reduction in gas-fired generation.
Elsewhere in Asia, Singapore LNG taking its first cargoes in March 2013 and has received 0.46 Mt by the end of July. Malaysia received its first LNG intakes in April 2013 and has received 0.53 Mt by the end of July. Indonesia is seeing a steady monthly in-flow accounting for 0.84 Mt in the January to July period. Thailand, an importer since 2011, has seen takes up 0.41 Mt (68%) y/y.
Over the first six months of 2013, Argentina's LNG imports were up 0.39 Mt (24%) y/y, with imports up in all months apart from February. Total gas consumption in Argentina has been falling with Energy Ministry figures putting H1 13 gas demand down some 1.3 bcm (-4.6%) y/y. The two combined suggest continued reductions in pipeline gas supply.
Over the first six months of 2013, Brazil's LNG imports were up 0.86 Mt (89%) y/y, with the strong increases being due to a significant reduction in hydro availability during the year.
Over the first six months of 2013, Mexico's LNG imports were up 0.18 Mt (10.8%). Since a weak January (-24%), all months have been up y/y with Q2 13 imports averaging 26% higher y/y. The increase in imports largely due to the operation of a new regas terminal.
Over the first six months of 2013, Chile's LNG imports were up 0.03 Mt (2.2%), showing little y/y variability with some months seeing increases and some reductions.
European LNG takes are down across the region, dropping another 8.0 Mt (-25%) over H1 13. All of the countries in the region were down y/y with the largest reductions being: Spain (2.4 Mt); the UK (2.3 Mt); France (0.8 Mt); and Italy (0.8 Mt). Even Turkey, a market that has grown consistently over the last three years has seen a reduction in imports of 0.8 Mt (-30%) y/y.