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After Russian flows dry up, India pays up to double the price for gas

After vital Russian deliveries were canceled, India purchased some of the nation’s most expensive liquefied natural gas shipments.

GAIL India Ltd. bought several LNG cargoes for delivery between October and November at more than double the price it paid last year. The New Delhi-based company is struggling to replace supply from the former trading arm of Gazprom PJSC, which was nationalized by Germany earlier this year and is paying contractual fines rather than delivering fuel.

 The global surge in natural gas prices after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has hit price-sensitive emerging countries hard, forcing them to pay the high spot market rates or face blackouts and industrial shutdowns. India’s retail inflation surged in August due to higher fuel costs.

GAIL didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

GAIL bought three LNG shipments for October to November delivery above $40 per million British thermal units, among the most expensive cargoes ever for delivery to India, according to traders with knowledge of the matter.

The company had won a price and volume concessions just before the 20-year contract with Gazprom’s marketing division in Singapore started in 2018. That unit was technically part of Gazprom Germania GmbH, seized by Germany’s regulator in April and renamed Securing Energy for Europe GmbH.

The new company can no longer source the fuel from Russia’s Yamal peninsula and has said it doesn’t have a supply to send to India. It is paying GAIL contractual penalties for non-delivery, which are likely to be a fraction of current spot prices.