Qatar plans to boost its liquified natural gas (LNG) production capacity to 110 million metric tons per year (mt/year) by 2024, an increase of roughly 43%, S&P Global Platts reported.
Global demand for LNG is expected to rise sharply due to the Asian markets, The International Energy Agency said in its Gas 2018 report.
“Without new investment, the continuous growth of the LNG trade could result in a tight market by 2023. Owing to the long lead time of such projects, investment decisions need to be taken in the next few years to ensure adequate supply through the 2020s,” it said.
Qatar is the world’s largest LNG producer with current capacity of 77 million mt/year. The country is ramping up its output after the lifting of a 12-year moratorium on the development of its offshore North Field in 2017.
“In 2017, China and India have increased their LNG imports by a combined 14 million tons per annum to reach 38 and 22 million tons/year respectively,” Mohammad Bin Saleh Al-Sada, Minister of Energy and Industry, said, adding that China is expected to raise the share of natural gas in its energy mix to 15% by 2030.
Qatar’s rapid expansion means it will be able to beat out competition from Australia that expects to be able to export 88 million mt/year if all its 10 projects reach full capacity.