India seeks additional 3 million tonnes LNG from Qatar

India has sought immediate supplies of three million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Qatar to tide over the current shortage of the fuel.

Minister of commerce, industry and textiles Anand Sharma has requested Qatar to supply 3 million tonnes of LNG to be imported by Petronet LNG Ltd and GAIL.

India is currently importing 7.5 MMTPA of LNG from RasGas, Qatar under a 25-year contract signed by Petronet LNG Ltd (PLL) in July 1999. The supply of 5 MMTPA LNG from Qatar commenced in 2004, with the balance 2.5 MMTPA starting in January 2010.

India needs additional long-term supplies of LNG and the quantity will further increase to 15 million tonnes in the next three to four years.

Qatar's minister of energy and industry Mohammed Bin Saleh Al-Sada said while Qatar's RasGas and Indian agencies are currently involved in negotiations, the process would be speeded up considering the urgency.

The two ministers met in Doha today on the sidelines of a trade meeting.