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Australian LNG continues to grow

The June Resources and Energy Quarterly report from the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science shows that Australia’s LNG exports are forecast to increase.

The report highlights that Australia’s LNG exports are expected to jump from an estimated $23 billion in 2016-17 to $37 billion in 2018-19, an average annual increase of 28 per cent.

LNG export volumes are forecast to reach 74 MMt in 2018-19, up from an estimated 51 MMt in 2016-17.

The report identifies that higher export volumes will be underpinned by the ramp-up of production at the Gorgon LNG Project, as well as the completion of the three LNG projects under construction – Wheatstone, Ichthys and Prelude.

These three projects are will add around 21 MMt to the country’s export capacity, bring total nameplate capacity to around 88 MMt.

The average price of Australian LNG is forecast to increase by 12 per cent in 2017-18, before stabilising in 2018-19.

Export values down

However, it isn’t all rosy, with the estimated export values for 2016-17 around $1 billion lower than forecast in the March Resources and Energy Quarterly because of lower than expected exports over the first half of 2017.

Downward revisions to export values in 2017-18 and 2018-19 (totalling $5.6 billion) reflect a subdued outlook for oil prices, and a slower ramp-up in exports than forecast in the March report.

The reports also highlights that the Australian Domestic Gas Security Mechanism (ADGSM) has the potential the affect future LNG exports.

World leader

On current projections, Australia will overtake Qatar as the world’s largest LNG exported in 2019, when Australian LNG exports reach 76 MMt.

However, the report highlights this isn’t a certainty, with the difference between projected exports of the two countries narrow, and downside risks to the outlook for the Australian LNG exports remaining.

You can read the June report here.