New Delhi: State-run National Thermal Power Corporation Ltd (NTPC)has purchased spot cargoes of liquefied natural gas (LNG)for as high as $12.27 (Rs542) per million British thermal unit (mBtu)this fiscal, to meet fuel requirement at its power plants.
NTPC, which ironically walked out of Petronet LNG Ltd some years ago, as it thought buying LNG at $2.53 per mBtu (delivered price of $4.60 per mBtu) from Qatar was too expensive, has been making monthly tenders to procure LNG for its plants at Anta, Kawas, Gandhar, Auraiya and Dadri. NTPC had 10 % stake in Petronet, the company formed to import LNG, along with Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, Bharat Petroleum CorporationLtd (BPCL) and GAIL India. But NTPC walked out soon after Petronet finalised purchases from RasGas of Qatar.
The company has eight gas-fired power plants with a total capacity of about 4,800 mega watt (MW). This includes 740-MW first phase of Dabhol project, which is being run on naphtha. Official sources said NTPC bought 7 million standard cubic metres per day (mmscmd)of gas this month from BPCL, IOC and GAIL, at $11.33-$11.78 per mBtu, and from Shell as well as the Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation Ltd (GSPC) at $12 per mBtu.
It bought a similar quantity of gas in December 2006 for $10.90 to $11.54 per mBtu from the state-run firms and at $12 per mBtu from GSPC.
NTPC made two tender purchases of 3-4 mmscmd each in November, getting offers for $10.40-$11 dollars per mBtu from state-owned companies ant $12.27 per mBtu from GSPC.
In October last year, NTPC bought 7 mmscmd gas for its Anta, Auraiya, Dadri, Faridabad, Kawas and Gandhar plants for a price ranging from $9.77 to $12.27 per mBtu. In the previous month, it procured 3-4 mmscmd from GAIL at $11.53 per mBtu while the July purchase of 7 mmscmd cost the company $10.33 per mBtu, sources said.