OREANDA-NEWS. February 17, 2011. Petronet LNG is looking to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Australia and Qatar for a new terminal, its head said on Wednesday, adding it would cost USD 70 million to double target capacity of the site. Petronet, which already operates a 10-million-tonne-a-year LNG regasification plant at Dahej in the western state of Gujarat, aims to start the Kochi terminal by October 2012, Chief Executive A.K. Balyan told reporters.

"We are seeking gas from Australia. We will also be seeking gas from Qatar as we have been doing for the Dahej terminal," Balyan said. It said in January it had signed deals for 1.1 million tonnes a year of LNG but did not specify sellers. Petronet imports LNG and sells to state-run companies Indian Oil Corp, Bharat Petroleum Corp and GAIL (India) Ltd.

It already has long-term contracts with Qatar and a deal to buy 1.5 million tonnes of LNG annually from Australia's Gorgon project from 2014."We are looking at completion in October ... We are doubling the capacity to 5 million tonnes at the Kochi terminal," Balyan said. In January, Petronet said it planned to double target capacity at the Kochi plant to 5 million tonnes a year and would commission it in October to December 2012.