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UK GAS-Near-term prices edge up, rest of curve declines

* Demand is 9.2 mcm above seasonal norm

* UK Continental Shelf production to fall next week

July 28 (Reuters) - British near-term gas prices inched higher on Thursday morning on slightly lower flows from Norway and increased demand, but prices further along the curve were mostly lower.

Gas for day-ahead delivery was up 0.10 pence at 36.10 p/therm at 0940 GMT from the previous settlement, while gas for immediate delivery was also 0.10 pence higher at 36.20 p/therm.

The UK gas system is largely balanced with demand forecast at 179.2 million cubic metres (mcm) and flows at 178.6 mcm/day, National Grid (LSE: NG.L - news) data shows. However, demand is 9.2 mcm above the seasonal norm.

Traders said flows to Britain from Norway were slightly lower and local distribution zone consumption was a little higher.

There are expectations that Continental Shelf production will fall next week as maintenance work is carried out at several facilities.

On Wednesday, an outage which has reduced production to zero at Centrica (LSE: CNA.L - news) 's North Morecambe gas sub terminal was extended until Aug. 15.

ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP - news) ' Britannia gas field is set to undergo maintenance from Aug. 3-20 but the operator has said reduced production rates should be expected three days either side of the shutdown due to individual field maintenance schedules.

The Bacton SEAL terminal will experience a planned outage from Aug. 3-7 and on Aug. 4 Norway's Vesterled pipeline will be shut down for one day of maintenance, reducing Norwegian imports by 12 mcm/day.

The number of liquefied natural gas tankers on the way to Europe is lower than usual and is probably due to maintenance which has affected Angolan production, as well as more purchases from Egypt and higher demand for gas for cooling in Japan and east Asia, Thomson Reuters (Dusseldorf: TOC.DU - news) analysts said.

Further along the curve, prices for Winter 2016 delivery were 0.20 pence lower at 44.70 p/therm and the Summer 2017 contract was down 0.25 p at 39.75 p/therm.

In Europe's carbon market, benchmark EU allowances were 0.07 euro higher at 4.62 euros a tonne. (Reporting by Nina Chestney)

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