Covid-19 may prove to be only a bump in the road, albeit a fairly sharp one, in the Asia Pacific region’s journey to an expanded but less-carbon intensive, and more gas-friendly, energy market. The region represents the most substantive opportunity for demand growth in gas—which, due to the geographies of both supply and demand, means mainly LNG.
But the story is a hugely diverse one: from the developed, but carbon-intensive economies of northeast Asia through to developing markets in southeast and southern Asia, as well as key regional suppliers Malaysia, Indonesia and Australia. But two narratives dominate, India and, in particular, China.
The future role of gas in Asia Pacific will hinge on many variables — economic, social, environmental, regulatory and technical — and the journey will neither be smooth or uniform. But demand looks guaranteed to grow, both for generation and in other, often complementary, sectors such as transport and industry.
A largely import-dependent region juggling, in the main, growing populations, expanding economies and often high carbon intensities of existing energy use means, though, that the price, availability and environmental attractiveness of LNG will be key variables.
Petroleum Economist’s LNG to Power Forum APAC will take place virtually on 22 October, and will examine the opportunities presented by these trends and the challenges involved.