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25 Jul, 2023 05:22

Asian firms scaling back LNG purchases from Russia – Bloomberg   

Japan is asking companies to reduce imports from the sanctioned country, the outlet has said 
Asian firms scaling back LNG purchases from Russia – Bloomberg    

Russian shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Asia declined by 15% to their lowest level in almost two years last month as importers sought to diversify supplies, Bloomberg reported last week, citing shipping data. 

Major LNG buyers in North Asia have cut imports from Russia amid ample current supply, the outlet said. It added that at least two Japanese companies were asking suppliers to reduce shipments from Russian energy ventures.  

Russian LNG exports are not subject to international sanctions, although some Asian consumers are wary of government scrutiny as well as potential risks to payments or shipping, Bloomberg noted.

South Korean firms are not buying Russian LNG from the spot market, the outlet added, citing sources familiar with the matter.

China, which has emerged as a leading consumer of Russian energy over the past year, has also reduced LNG purchases. Shipments from Russia to China halved in June compared to May, reaching their lowest level in 11 months, Bloomberg said. 

At the same time, most long-term importers of the Sakhalin-2 LNG project in Russia’s Far East, including Japan and South Korea, have continued to buy gas from the venture, even as Western majors such as British Shell opted to leave following the launch of Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine.

Japanese trading house Mitsui & Co has no plans to exit Sakhalin-2 due to its importance in securing stable natural gas supplies to Japan, senior executive managing officer Toru Matsui said at the company’s annual general meeting last month.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT's business section

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