Published: Fri, July 14, 2017
Business | By Max Garcia

United States enters natural gas market as an exporter

United States enters natural gas market as an exporter

The expected to be a major natural gas exporter by 2022, according to a projection by the International Energy Agency (IEA).

The US is already ranked the number one global producer of natural gas with the country producing 890 billion cubic meters (bcm) by 2022, according to the agency. By 2022, the IEA estimates the U.S. will be on course to challenge Australia and Qatar for global leadership among LNG exporters.

"The US shale revolution shows no sign of running out of steam and its effects are now amplified by a second revolution of rising LNG supplies", said Fatih Birol, the executive director of the IEA.

The United States, the world's largest gas producer, would increase output more than any other country in the next five years, the IEA.

USA domestic demand for gas is rising due to higher demand from the industry, but more than half of the production increase would go to LNG for export, the IEA reckons. By 2022, USA production was expected to be 890 bcm, accounting for 22 percent of the total global gas output. Dry natural gas output is expected to further increase by an average of 3.1 Bcf/d in 2018.

This is a huge reversal from about a decade ago when energy analysts believed the USA would become one of the world's largest LNG importers because natural gas production appeared to be in permanent decline.

However, the new LNG capacity is being added to an already well-supplied market, while demand is falling in some of the traditionally large importing nations, such as Japan, it said.

"Thanks to the United States, Australia, and other countries the share of illalangi, liquefied natural gas will grow substantially and it will provide flexibility in the markets", said the IEA CEO.

Consumption is expected to reach nearly 4,000 bcm by 2022 with China accounting for almost 40 percent of growth.

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