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Petronet LNG plans $3b investment outside India

Petronet LNG plans to spend up to $3 billion in the next five years to expand overseas, setting up terminals in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka among other countries. Falling spot LNG prices have boosted consumption of the fuel in India and triggered demand for LNG infrastructure in countries long shut out of the gas trade.

Managing director of Petronet LNG said the following,

“We are thinking global and we are not looking inwardly only at India. We have potential and we should aim for 30 billion to ­40 billion rupees ($445 million­ to $596 million) worth of projects every year for five years.”

Petronet has previously just focused on importing liquefied natural gas (LNG) for regasification at its plants at Dahej in Western Gujarat state and at Kochi in the southern state of Kerala.

Now, the company plans to invest Rs 50 billion to build a 5 million tonne a year (mtpa) terminal at Kutbdia in Bangladesh. Last month Petronet also submitted a proposal for a 1 ­mtpa floating LNG terminal in Sri Lanka, which wants a gas link for its 600­ MW power plant. This would require 13 billion rupees in investment, if approved by the Sri Lankan government.

Rising Indian demand for LNG has prompted Petronet to operate its 10 mtpa Dahej plant at 120 percent capacity. However, its Kochi plant is operating at a fraction of its 5­ mtpa capacity as pipelines linking the terminal to industrial clients are not ready yet.

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