TOKYO Feb 27 Two of Japan's biggest natural gas
users, Tokyo Electric Power Co and Tokyo Gas Co
, said on Wednesday they had separately agreed with
Astomos Energy Corp to buy U.S. liquefied petroleum gas from
this year to cut fuel costs.
For the first time, the pricing will be based on U.S.
propane prices, a benchmark for U.S. LPG, the two companies said
in separate statements. Gas prices have come under pressure from
an oversupply of natural gas, including shale gas.
Traditionally, users in Asia rely for the bulk of their
imports on Middle East LPG, whose pricing is based on contract
prices for propane and butane Saudi Aramco sets monthly.
Astomos, the LPG joint venture between oil refiner Idemitsu
Kosan Co and trading firm Mitsubishi Corp, is
set to ship from an LPG terminal run by Enterprise Products
Partners in Texas, the two companies said.
Tokyo Electric's planned purchase of 200,000 tonnes of LPG
over the three years from 2013 will be burnt at its power plant
in Anegasaki, east of Tokyo.
The purchase by Tokyo Gas, Japan's biggest city gas
supplier, would total 400,000 tonnes over the six years from