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Panama Canal toll hike looms as new East Asian energy risk

Japan braces for higher import costs of household fuel LPG

A cargo ship passes through the locks on the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal. It takes 10 days longer to ship gas from the U.S. to Japan without using the canal.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- The decision by the Panama Canal to raise its tolls starting next year has sparked concerns in Asia over import costs for liquefied petroleum gas, an important energy source for households already feeling the heat of inflation.

For LPG tankers passing through the canal, tolls are set to rise by about 90% from current levels by 2025, under a new toll scheduled announced in April by the Panama Canal Authority.

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