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LNG price row

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LNG Industry,

Reuters are reporting that India's biggest importer of US LNG is trying to re-negotiate prices with the US seller, undermining plans by US President Donald Trump to export more gas to the fast-growing Asian nation.

Any new LNG agreements with India will depend on how GAIL and Cheniere of the US deal with a long-term supply contract signed in 2011 for an estimated US$22 billion.

India's GAIL has deals to buy 5.8 million tpy of US LNG for 20 years, mostly with Cheniere, but is now asking to re-negotiate the price. A commissioning cargo was sent last year, but supplies in earnest will only likely start in 2018.

Two sources at state-run GAIL said they were trying to re-negotiate the contract.

Cheniere, currently the only US company exporting LNG, announced that it was not open to a lower price.

The contract price is calculated on a formula based on US spot prices for natural gas, and currently costs India US$8.50 per million British thermal units (mmBtu).

Traders said that Cheniere would struggle to send cargoes at a lower price.

Asian spot LNG prices LNG-AS, which exclude all extra costs like shipping, have fallen by more than 40% this year to US$5.40 per mmBtu amid ballooning oversupply as production from Australia and the US rises.

Other LNG buyers, including top importer Japan, are also pressing for better terms.

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