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Liquefied natural gas (LNG) is an odorless and colorless liquid, which is formed by cooling natural gas to -162°C. The liquefaction process shrinks the volume of gas by 600 times, making it easier to store and ship. When this gas reaches its destination, it is again converted into gas by regasification process and transported through vessels and pipes to end-use consumers. Liquefied natural gas is an emerging fuel due to its cleanest burning nature as compared to petrol, and diesel. Vital drivers such as growing demand for a clean source of energy from several end-use industries, government initiatives to strengthen gas pipeline infrastructure, and substantial growth in global natural gas liquefaction capacity are expected to fuel the growth of the global liquefied natural gas market over the forecast period.
Based on the application, the market is segregated as a transportation fuel, power generation, and others. The power generation application segment accounted for the largest share in 2019. The growth of the power generation segment is owing to the growing preference for cleaner energy sources for power generation. For instance, according to Mexico’s National Energy Ministry (SENER), over 60% of Mexico’s electric capacity additions will be from natural gas-fired power plants till 2020. The growth of the transportation fuel segment is ascribed to the increasing use of liquefied natural gas as fuel in vehicles across European countries and China.
Rapid growth in pipeline infrastructures with favorable government regulations, rising demand for natural gas from several industries, and fluctuation in oil prices are some of the major factors fueling the industry growth. Growing industrialization and urbanization, along with a growing number of power-related projects, such as petrochemicals and city gas distribution (CGD), are likely to provide a stimulus to market growth. However, inadequate pipeline infrastructure in remote locations is likely to hinder the market growth.
Key Market Driver -
Rising demand for natural gas from several industries
Key Market Restraint -
Inadequate pipeline infrastructure in remote locations
Some of the major companies in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) market are Exxon Mobil Corporation, Royal Dutch Shell PLC, Apache Corporation, BG Group Plc, Cheniere Energy Inc, ConocoPhillips, Dominion Resources Inc, Kinder Morgan Inc, Qatar Petroleum, Sempra Energy, Veresen Inc, and Woodside Petroleum Ltd.
The global LNG market is studied across different regions like North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. Asia Pacific region is expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. In 2019, globally LNG imports grew over 12% during the first nine months. Where China’s LNG import increased by 14-16% in 2019. Australia is one of the global exporters of liquefied natural gas, with major projects in Queensland and Western Australia. India is expected to remain an attractive location for exporters and manufacturers owing to the upsurge in infrastructure development. Approximately over 30% of the new LNG supply capacity is under construction and is expected to come online by 2025.
Europe & North America regions are also expected to grow significantly during the forecast period. According to IEA, the U.S. LNG export capacity increased from less than 1 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in 2016 to nearly 9 Bcf/d at the end of 2019. In 2019, U.S. LNG exports reached a record high of about 1,819 Bcf to 38 countries, and LNG exports accounted for 39% of total U.S. natural gas exports. About half of the LNG exports went to five countries in 2019. In 2019, the U.S. imported about 52.8 Bcf of LNG from just four countries. This was the lowest amount since 1996 and equal to about 2% of total U.S. natural gas imports.
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