Demand for global liquefied natural gas (LNG) is set to skyrocket over the next 20 years, so much so that a consultancy firm fears a potential shortage in the world fleet.
According to a report from Ocean Shipping Consultants, the current LNG fleet has over 53m cubic metres (cbm) of vessel capacity. To match the expected development of trade volumes an additional 90m cbm of vessel capacity would be needed, increasing the current 360 vessels currently to over 900 vessels by 2030.
Total LNG trade is forecast to grow from 310 bcm in 2011 to approximately 570 bcm by 2020 and over 880 bcm by 2030. The increase in LNG trade will come mainly from increased exports from Qatar and Australia and high demand from the Chinese and Indian markets.
The ‘Global LNG Trade & Trends to 2030’ report predicts that new trading patterns will emerge as the number of LNG importing countries increases to nearly 40 over the next 20 years.