Vedanta seeks minimum $19 for gas from Gujarat block to cash in on surge in global energy prices

AgenciesUpdated: Tuesday, March 22, 2022, 07:13 PM IST
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Bids have been sought based on the average monthly price of Brent crude oil and Platts' West India Marker (WIM) for liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipments. / Representational image |

Billionaire Anil Agarwal's Vedanta Ltd is seeking a minimum $19 price for natural gas produced from a field off Gujarat as it looks to cash in on the recent surge in global energy prices.

The firm has called for bids for the sale of 0.25 million standard cubic meters per day of gas produced from CB/OS-2 block located in Suvali, Surat district of Gujarat, according to Vedanta's tender document.

Bids have been sought based on the average monthly price of Brent crude oil and Platts' West India Marker (WIM) for liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipments.

The sale price will be lower of Platts LNG WIM + 1.0 or a premium over 16.67 per cent average Brent crude oil price, the tender document said.

At the current trading price of $117.68 per barrel for Brent crude oil, the floor price comes to $19.6 per million British thermal units. To this, buyers will have to bid a premium.

Platts WIM closed at $32.275 per mmBtu on March 21 and if this benchmark is considered, the selling price will be $33.275.

''The sales gas price on a monthly basis shall be calculated as lower of Platts LNG WIM + 1.0 (or) 16.67 per cent of Average Brent Price + P,'' it said adding 'P' shall be quoted by bidders in USD per mmBtu.

The floor price will however be not lower than the government-administered price for gas, which currently is $2.9 per mmBtu.

While Vedanta holds 40 per cent interest in the CB-OS/2 block, the state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) has 40 per cent. The balance 10 per cent is held by Tata Ptrodyne Ltd.

Vedanta, the operator of the block, is seeking buyers for 0.25 mmscmd of gas for 14 months starting May 1, 2022.

Global energy prices have been on the upswing over the last couple of months as a result of twin factors of demand returning after the pandemic and fears of supply disruptions following the Russia-Ukraine crisis.

While crude oil prices soared to a 14-year high of $140 per barrel earlier this month, spot or current market prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Asia hit a record high of more than $59.672 per mmBtu.

The uptrend in rates has been captured by domestic producers as well.

Reliance Industries Ltd had earlier this month sold natural gas produced from a coalfield in Madhya Pradesh for over $24 to firms, including GAIL, GSPC and Shell.

Reliance sold 0.65 million standard cubic metres per day (mmscmd) of gas from its coal-bed methane (CBM) block SP-(West)-CBM-2001/1 at a $8.28 premium over 13.2 per cent of the prevailing Brent crude oil prices.

This rate compares to $2.9 that state-owned producer ONGC and Oil India Ltd get gas from fields given to them on a nomination basis. A higher capped rate of $6.13 is available for discoveries made in difficult areas, such as the deep sea.

Hindustan Oil Exploration Company (HOEC) sold 0.3 mmscmd of gas to Gujarat State Petroleum Corp (GSPC) at a price of around 22 per cent of Brent.

(With inputs from PTI)

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