The agreement called for Qatar to provide 7.5 million metric tonnes of LNG annually to Petronet LNG on a delivered ex-ship basis (DES) between 2028 and 2048.

India’s Petronet signs biggest LNG deal till date with QatarEnergy

In a bid to increase usage of LNG fuel in India to reduce emissions, India’s top gas importer, Petronet LNG has signed the largest single contract for LNG supply with QatarEnergy, Reuters reported. According to a Petronet LNG statement, the agreement called for Qatar to provide 7.5 million metric tonnes of LNG annually to Petronet LNG on a delivered ex-ship basis (DES) between 2028 and 2048. Qatar, the world’s second largest LNG exporter, is pushing to play a larger role in Asia and Europe as competition from top supplier U.S. increases.By 2027, it intends to increase its annual liquefaction capacity from 77 million tonnes to 126 million tonnes. Petronet LNG provides gas to Indian energy firms for end-user sale, mostly through long-term procurement agreements with Australia and Qatar.  

Growing demand: Coal India to add new mines, expand existing ones 

State-owned Coal India plans to start operations at five new mines and expand capacity of at least 16 existing ones to meet growing demand its chairman told Reuters. The newswire added that to address record power demand in recent months, the rise in coal-fired power output exceeded renewable energy growth for the first time since at least 2019.

A record output by Coal India—the world’s largest coal miner whose profits and share price have surged since early 2023—is set to boost inventories at power plants running on domestic coal by 16.1% year-over-year to 40 million metric tons by end-March, Coal India Chairman P.M. Prasad said in written response to questions. The company is on track to exceed its production target for the second straight year during the fiscal year ending March, Prasad said.

Oil India on look out for foreign tech partner for first offshore foray

With the goal of attracting international partners, Oil India Limited is set to undertake roadshows in Abu Dhabi in order to explore and produce off the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Global corporations like Baker Hughes, Equinor, and ExxonMobil are being considered for the alliance.

The national oil corporation has set aside more than ₹1,500 crore for its offshore exploration endeavours, with the first phase of exploration scheduled to start in September 2024. One of the two state-owned oil corporations involved in production and exploration is Oil India Limited. ONGC is the other one. The corporation has four offshore blocks in the Konkan-Kerala, Krishna-Godavari, and Andaman Islands, totaling 13,230 sqkm.

India to lead global oil demand growth, surpassing China by 2027: IEA report 

India’s oil demand is predicted to rise by 1.2 million barrels per day (mb/d) between 2023 and 2030, accounting for more than one-third of the projected 3.2 mb/d growth in world demand, according to the IEA’s “India Oil Market Outlook to 2023.” By 2027, India is expected to surpass China in the increase of its oil demand and take the lead in driving up oil demand worldwide. In contrast to other major economies, India’s demand growth will be more uneven across product categories, with only 18% going towards the use of petrochemical feedstocks. 

This stands in stark contrast to global trends, where over 90% of net gains—and nearly all of them in China—are allocated to the production of chemicals. The report also noted significant increases in demand for aviation turbine fuel, naphtha, and diesel through 2030, with jet fuel demand growing at 6.9%, and naphtha and diesel at 5.9% and 4.5%, respectively. This demand surge is attributed to rapid progress in manufacturing, commerce, transport, and agriculture, boosting diesel usage notably.

India’s core sector growth hits 14-month low of 3.8% in Dec 

Based on a high base and a slowdown in the growth of six component sectors, India’s core sector output growth in December reached a 14-month low of 3.8% year-over-year, according to figures from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. This represented a significant decrease from the 7.9% recorded in the preceding month. The core sector, which consists of eight important infrastructure businesses, grew by 8.3% as of December 2022. Based on the data, the only industries where output increased in December compared to the previous month were cement (1.3%) and fertilisers (5.8%). 

In December, there was a sequential slowdown in the growth of coal (10.6%), natural gas (6.6%), refinery products (2.6%), steel (5.9%), and electricity (0.6%). On the other hand, crude oil production contracted (-1 per cent) for the second consecutive month in December.  Experts said that the coal sector did well due to higher mining in preparation for greater power demand due to winter. The electricity sector, however, slowed down reflecting partly lower industrial activity. And higher demand for capital goods and automobiles kept production growth up. 

Policy reversal: Saudi Arabia orders Aramco to lower oil capacity target

The national oil company Aramco in Saudi Arabia was given an order on Tuesday by the government to stop expanding its oil output and to aim for a maximum sustained production capacity of 12 million barrels per day (bpd), which is 1 million barrels per day less than the objective set in 2020. Roughly 10% of the 100 million barrels of oil that the world uses each day come from Saudi Aramco. The corporation stood apart from much of the industry, where spending on oil production is often declining due to concerns about climate targets and future demand, thanks to its multibillion-dollar investment strategy. 

A person with knowledge of the situation claims that the ministry of energy made the decision, which was unrelated to any operational or technical problems at the business, which is still prepared to resume the investment programme upon request. However, in an effort by Opec to maintain prices in the face of slower-than-expected demand growth and rising supply from the US and other producers, Saudi Arabia has reduced output on multiple occasions over the last eighteen months. 

Shell’s LNG outlook: After demand in Europe post Ukraine war, demand surge in Asia

Demand for liquefied natural gas (LNG) grew after Russia stopped its pipeline to Europe following Ukraine war, but the production of the fossil fuel is likely to continue to grow until at least 2040, according to Shell’s LNG Outlook for 2024, which may cost the world its climate targets, reported the Daily Telegraph. 

The Times’ coverage of the outlook said Shell predicted LNG demand will rise by 50% by 2040, before peaking in that decade, due to big Asian economies offsetting declines in the US and Europe. The oil major is predicting an increase to between 625m tonnes to 685m tonnes a year in 2040, from 404m tonnes last year; however, this is below 2023’s prediction of 700m tonnes, the article notes. 

Govt approves forest clearances and mining permits in various sensitive zones

In its most recent meeting, the environment ministry’s Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) gave its “in-principle” clearance for the opening and expansion of several mines in Chhattisgarh, Odisha, and Meghalaya as well as for exploratory drilling in Assam’s wildlife-rich Doyang protected forest. Oil & Natural Gas Corporation Ltd. has been given permission by the FAC to conduct exploratory drilling in order to reroute 1.781 hectares of forest land in the Doyang Reserved forest. There are many elephants and one-horned rhinoceroses in the region, and there are also a lot of human-wildlife conflicts. The FAC in Meghalaya has given its approval to divert 11.09 hectares of considered forest for the East Jaintia Hills Opencast Limestone Mine. The FAC in Meghalaya has given its approval to divert 11.09 hectares of considered forest for the East Jaintia Hills Opencast Limestone Mine. The location is close to the Hoolock gibbon’s habitat in the Narpuh Wildlife Sanctuary’s eco-sensitive zone. The committee suggested “in-principle” approval for the extra diversion of 94.293 hectares of forest in Chhattisgarh in order to expand the Gevra mine.