Gas Blog

Latest trends in LNG and Gas markets - July 2018

Vivek Chandra presents his forth 'video blog' where he discusses mid 2018 LNG market view and recap of World Gas Conference (June 2018)

Please visit Vivek Chandra's youtube channel to view the blog - click here.

Latest trends in LNG and Gas markets - December 2017

Vivek Chandra presents his third 'video blog' where he discusses LNG market recap of 2017, and outlook for 2018.

Please visit Vivek Chandra's youtube channel to view the blog - click here.

Latest trends in LNG and Gas markets - May 2017

 Vivek Chandra presents his second 'video blog' where he discusses latest developments in LNG and gas markets.

Please visit Vivek Chandra's youtube channel to view the blog - click here.

Recap of 2016 and looking forward to 2017 in global LNG markets

Vivek Chandra presents his first 'video blog' where he recaps developments in 2016 and looks ahead to trends in 2017. 

Please visit Vivek Chandra's youtube channel to view the blog - click here.

US LNG exports: Is the threat to Australian projects real?


Much has been written about the competitiveness of Australian LNG in global markets. Until a few months ago, this discussion centered on comparison of commercial terms of Australian contracts versus the threat of US hub-based pricing terms. However, as oil prices have plummeted by 50% since mid 2014, the debate has now become one about relative cost of supply between future LNG projects. On this basis, Australian projects do not compare favourably to the coming onslaught of US LNG exports into traditional LNG Asian markets. In fact, a recent Harvard study stated that ‘most Australian LNG schemes are unprofitable’ due to their costs in the range of US$3000/t as compared to the US projects which have costs in the US$700-$900/t.

The Rapid Evolution of the International LNG Trade

Changing Players, Changing Structures, Changing Strategies

 The fundamental structure of the international LNG industry has remained largely unchanged for over 40 years. The model has recently begun to experience fundamental changes, heralding an exciting and turbulent future.

The previous model has been dominated by large companies exporting to customers in North Asia and Europe. The links between the upstream asset and the LNG plant, as well as the link between the plant owner and importer were strong and inflexible.  Only these large companies had the financial, technical and project management skills to develop LNG export projects. Out of the 28 identified LNG “complexes” around the world operating pre-2015, all except three projects involved a large IOC as a sponsor or buyer of LNG following this commercial model.  Looking forward from 2016, there are an unprecedented number of LNG projects proposed – but out of the projects likely to be sanctioned, nearly all of them do not involve the traditional IOC companies and follow non-traditional models.  New players are able to access new sources of financing, freely available technology, and have realized that the project management record of large companies is less than stellar.

What will be the impact of falling oil prices on US LNG projects such as Texas LNG?

The recent dramatic drop in global oil prices has taken the world by surprise. Though history is littered with periods when oil prices have overshot as well as ‘undershot’ price expectations, the current drop has been precipitous.  As of writing this article, oil prices have dropped around 50% and WTI is priced close to $50/bbl for the first time in over five years.

For consumers of LNG, especially those in Asia that buy most of their gas on oil-linked contracts, purchase price of LNG has dropped as oil prices have fallen. If their contracts have a ‘floor’ oil price, the impact on LNG prices may be dampened and not as dramatic. Coincidently, prices of coal, a substitute fuel for LNG in power generation, have also dropped over the past six months – though at a lesser extent than drop in LNG prices.  Together, these factors have also impacted the LNG spot market where prices have similarly dropped.  More affordable LNG will encourage more consumption for power generation, residential, commercial and transport use. Electricity demand is growing in many parts of Asia and even in places where demand is flat, cheaper LNG will encourage switching of fuels from dirty and politically sensitive sources such as coal and nuclear, to cleaner burning gas.