Belgium: Cooling temperatures, strong natural gas demand spur prompt gains
As the weekend approached, demand rose following forecasts of falling temperatures, causing the Zeebrugge natural gas prompt to edge higher on Friday.
Weather Services International suggested Belgium would experience temperatures between 2-4°C below average.
With temperatures expected to linger at these levels for the foreseeable future, Day-ahead did manage to post a modest gain of 0.5p/th. The Day-ahead basis was largely unchanged at +0.05p/th.
With the BBL resuming flows to Britain, the marginal rise was attributed by some to a decreasing amount of gas on mainland Europe, with a larger amount being sent to, or remaining in, Britain.
Imports from Britain via the bi-directional Interconnector pipeline registered a downturn on Friday despite Within-day trading at a premium to its NBP equivalent for the duration of the session.
Just 19.34Mm³ was nominated to flow from Britain to Belgium on Friday, according to IUK data, far less than the 29.15Mm³ that was sent on Thursday.
A Weekend basis of -0.25p/th caused nominations for Saturday to slump to just 5.44Mm³.
Despite the anticipated arrival of a reload LNG cargo, the British Merchant, on 15 April, which is expected to limit supply flexibility, neither the Weekend or the WDNW bases rose.
The Maersk Qatar is expected to follow on 21 April, although this is scheduled to be a delivery rather than a reload, according to terminal data. JT
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