26-01-2017

Japan 2016 thermal coal imports fall from record, LNG purchases down for 2nd year

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Japan’s coal imports for power generation fell in 2016 from four years of successive record highs and liquefied natural gas (LNG) purchases dropped for a second year as an energy crisis brought on by the 2011 Fukushima disaster eased, official data showed.

Rising supplies of homegrown renewable energy and the return of some nuclear power, amid falling demand as Japan’s population declines, mean the world’s third-largest economy has more diversity in its sources of energy.

Thermal coal imports declined to just below 110 million tonnes in 2016, down from a record-high 113.84 million tonnes in 2015, the Ministry of Finance said on Wednesday. Import costs fell 20 percent from a year earlier.

Shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG) dropped for a second year last year, down 2 percent to 83.34 million tonnes, while their value fell 40 percent.

Japan is the world’s biggest importer of LNG, gas chilled to liquid form for transportation on ships, and demand had surged to successive records after the March 2011 meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant led to the eventual shutdown of all reactors in the country.

But two reactors are now operating under new safety standards and more may be restarted this year.

Crude oil imports slipped to 3.35 million barrels per day, or 194.828 million kilolitres for the year, the lowest since 1988, with their value falling by nearly a third.

The following tables lay out Japan’s fossil fuels imports for last month and for all of 2016, with volumes of crude, oil products and gasoline/naphtha in million kilolitres; LNG, LPG and coal in million tonnes; values in millions of yen.

Numbers are preliminary.

         December                                          
             Fuel    Volume   Yr/yr %       Value   Yr/yr %
    Mineral fuels         -         -   1,304,492      -4.8
        Crude oil    18.061       3.0     599,350       1.8
 All oil products         -         -     127,216     -11.3
 Gasoline/naphtha     2.374     -11.9      84,264     -20.9
              LNG     7.549      -6.5     323,361     -25.5
              LPG     0.963       1.0      46,251     -13.6
       Total coal    16.314       3.9     203,451      39.4
     Thermal coal     9.454      -5.5      96,880       9.8
   
        Full year                                          
             Fuel    Volume   Yr/yr %       Value   Yr/yr %
    Mineral fuels         -         -  12,044,238     -33.9
        Crude oil   194.828      -0.3   5,534,054     -32.4
 All oil products         -         -   1,073,286     -41.1
 Gasoline/Naphtha    26.295     -13.0     824,332     -38.8
              LNG    83.340      -2.0   3,283,913     -40.4
              LPG    10.900      -0.8     446,943     -31.3
       Total coal   189.732      -0.5   1,654,450     -16.2
     Thermal coal   109.931      -3.4     876,746     -20.0

Source: Reuters

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