Editorial Comment

Adrienne Blume, Managing Editor

A. Blume, Editor

The continued expansion of natural gas trade is led primarily by growth in the LNG sector, which has tripled over the past 3 yr. The share of LNG volumes traded on a spot and short-term basis has increased to 32% from 27%, signaling greater liquidity in the LNG market. 

A total LNG export capacity of 406 MMtpy is in place in 20 countries around the world. Around 66 MMtpy of new liquefaction capacity is under construction as of early 2019. Approximately 25 MMtpy of new liquefaction capacity is expected to come online in 2019, of which 21 MMtpy will start up in the US. Conversely, LNG regasification capacity totals approximately 868 MMtpy in 42 countries. Eight new floating regas terminals and 14 new onshore regas terminals are under construction, representing 95 MMtpy of new regas capacity. 

Classification organization DNV GL expects global LNG export capacity to increase by 45% from 2017–2022 to more than 400 metric MMtpy, with 90% of the new capacity coming from the US and Australia. By 2050, this capacity is anticipated to exceed 700 MMtpy. However, concerns exist about supply and infrastructure after 2022. According to the Gas Exporting Countries Forum, approximately $500 B must be invested in liquefaction, regasification, pipeline and shipping projects by 2040. Investments will need to be made in 2019 and 2020 to ensure that gas demand can be met after 2025. For more in-depth information and forecasts for spending, construction projects and market trends in the LNG and gas processing sectors, please see the Natural Gas/LNG section of the “HPI Market Data 2020” report, published by Hydrocarbon Processing in early November. GP


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