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Excess price accusations denied
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CNPC yesterday dismissed claims that it paid over the odds in a deal to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG).

Last month CNPC signed an agreement with ExxonMobil to purchase 2.25 million tons of LNG annually from the Gorgon field in Australia for 20 years, valued at $41 billion.

Media reports compared the deal with another one signed by India's Petrone and ExxonMobil in the same month, under which Petrone will buy 1.5 million tons of LNG at $20.5 billion. The reports said the CNPC price was higher by over one third.

CNPC said in a statement that "the price is reasonable as it is based on a long term contract".

Analysts said the deal was in line with China's determination to use more natural gas because it is cleaner. It now accounts for 3 percent of China's total energy consumption.

(China Daily September 10, 2009)

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