As Qatar is moving full steam ahead to expand its LNG production capacity, the country has emerged as one of the bright spots for Middle Eastern gas output over the next three decades.
The outlook for the future role of Qatar in global LNG trade is very promising since Qatar has a great potential to send its LNG cargoes into Asian markets with lower shipping costs compared to other LNG suppliers, said the sixth edition of GECF Global Gas Outlook 2050.
“Iran, Qatar and Saudi Arabia are the bright spots for Middle Eastern gas output over the next three decades. Between 2020 and 2050, the natural gas supply is set to climb by an annual average growth rate of 2.4% in Iran, 2.2 percent in Qatar and 1.2 percent in Saudi Arabia,” noted the GECF Global Gas Outlook 2050.
Qatar, the world’s biggest supplier of liquefied natural gas (LNG), has embarked on an ambitious LNG capacity expansion plan. The two-phase North Field Expansion project will see Qatar LNG capacity increase from 77 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) to 126 mtpa by 2027, showing an increase of around 64 percent. The first phase of expansion will include expansion of LNG capacity from 77 mtpa to 110 mtpa by 2025 while the second phase will take LNG capacity to 126 mtpa by 2027.
Most GECF (Gas Exporting Countries Forum) countries will maintain or expand gas production capacity over the outlook period. We expect that total gas production from current GECF members will increase by more than half, reaching approximately 2600 bcm by 2050. This translates to a 1.4 percent annual growth rate over the outlook period, which will enable the GECF to keep its share of global gas production at around 47 percent.
“Russia (41 percent), Iran (26 percent), Qatar (24.2 percent) and Nigeria (9.7 percent) are expected to be the largest contributors to incremental gas production volumes. Russia and Algeria are expected to contribute the most to unconventional gas production,” noted the report.
As the third-largest natural gas reserve holder, Qatar has been playing a meaningful role in the global natural gas trade that resulted from continuous and successful exploration in its giant North Field and investing in advanced LNG trains, employing the best practices in associated technologies.
Qatar’s North Field along with Iran’s South Pars form one of the world’s largest gas fields. Qatar is the biggest LNG exporter worldwide with 77.1 mtpa, which accounted for 22 percent of global LNG production in 2020.