Bloomberg News

Japan January LNG Imports Rise to Record; Oil Purchases Fall

February 20, 2012

(Updates with table at end of story.)

Feb. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Japan’s liquefied natural gas imports rose to a record in January after the Fukushima nuclear disaster led to the shutdown of most of the country’s atomic reactors, causing utilities to use more fossil fuels.

The nation’s LNG imports climbed 28.2 percent from a year earlier to 8.15 million metric tons, according to a preliminary report released today by the Ministry of Finance.

Power utilities increased thermal power generation by 28.5 percent in the month, according to data compiled by the Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan. The average operating rate of nuclear power plants in January was 10.3 percent, it said.

The country’s crude-oil imports fell 2.1 percent to 18.83 million kiloliters (118 million barrels) in the month, the finance ministry said in the report.

The following table shows Japan’s imports for January:

--Editors: Paul Gordon, Alexander Kwiatkowski

To contact the reporter on this story: Yuji Okada in Tokyo at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alexander Kwiatkowski at

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