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Thailand's PTT looks to LNG partnership deals to secure supply

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LNG Industry,

Reuters are reporting that Thailand’s PTT’s July purchase of a stake in a LNG plant operated by Malaysia's Petronas will be its model for securing natural gas in the future.

Thailand plans to triple its LNG intake by 2022 as its domestic natural gas output dwindles, and the strategy it is adopting is similar to Japanese utilities such as Tokyo Gas and Osaka Gas taking small stakes in Australian gas developments to lock up supplies.

In July, PTT Global LNG, a joint venture of PTT and its unit PTT Exploration and Production Pcl, took a 10% stake in a Petronas liquefaction plant for US$500 million. That was after PTT signed a 15-year LNG purchase agreement last year with the Malaysian state oil and gas company.

Thailand currently imports about 5 million tpy of LNG, with 70% of that used for power generation. Last year, policy makers set a target for annual LNG imports at 17.4 million t by 2022.

In keeping with that target, PTT is planning to increase its annual regasification capacity to 21.5 million t, from 10 million t now.

PTT Group, with nearly US$15 billion in cash, is better placed for acquisition than many peers, such as Petronas and Indonesia's Pertamina.

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