India and Japan – two of the world’s largest importers of LNG – are said to be considering clubbing together so they can buy it a cheaper price.
Last year October the two agreed to carry out a study looking at how to head off the rising costs of LNG and this September they signed a deal to develop “a market environment that would enable effective, stable and globally competitive LNG procurement”.
Asia faces higher costs for LNG than Europe and the US in particular. The September agreement referred to the mark up of prices as the “Asian premium”.
The most recent World Energy Outlook from the IEA found Japan was paying five times what the US was for natural gas.
Over the next three months Japan and India will look at whether pooling their spending power could be a solution, the Indian newspaper Economic Times reported.
Speaking at the 8th Asia Gas Partnership Summit, India’s Oil Minister M. Veerappa Moily also called on other major purchasers in the region – including China and Korea – to help forge an Asian buyers group to bring down the price.