According to the Japan Times on Apr 4th, it was reported that CCP was seeking to import Russian cheap liquefied natural gas (LNG) which has been shunned by the market because of the imposed sanctions. People with knowledge of the matter revealed that state-owned companies Sinopec and PetroChina were in discussions with suppliers to buy spot cargoes from Russia at a deep discount. They were considering using Russian firms to participate in LNG purchase tenders and hide their procurement plans from the international community. This mimicked what CCP’s oil refiners did in the last few weeks and they had already purchased several LNG shipments.
Traders said Russia offered a more than 10% discount in the LNG spot market, where the CCP used so-called sleeves or firms to purchase on their behalf to mask their procurement. This looked as if CCP’s companies were accepting a delivery of Russian LNG from a long-term contract.
Communist China also deliberately avoided participation from satellite offices from London to Singapore, although most of the CCP’s LNG trading desks were located overseas. Smaller LNG buyers in Communist China were unable to complete the purchase without credit guarantees from banks. Only the top importers could use pre approved credit lines from banks to buy the spot cargoes from Russia. Given Communist China wasn’t in dire need of LNG at present, their topping up storage tanks may have served the purpose of potential military operations against Taiwan.