Australia exports over 50 Mt of LNG in FY 2017

Australia’s LNG exports are forecast to grow 22.6 percent in the current 2017-2018 financial year after a robust performance in the 12 months to June 30 this year, according to energy consultancy EnergyQuest.

In its monthly LNG report for June, EnergyQuest said Australia broke the 50 million tons (Mt) barrier for the first time in the full 2016-2017 financial year, exporting a total of 51.4 Mt of LNG.

This volume is expected to be outperformed in the current new financial year, growing to 63 Mt by June 30 next year, just below forecasts of 63.8 Mt by the Office of Chief Economist.

The latest yearly export performance is more than 37 percent stronger than the FY16 total of 37.5 Mt exported.

EnergyQuest estimates the sales value of the FY17 LNG exports at $22.3 billion compared to $16.6 billion for the previous year.

“Over FY17, production increased from almost every Australian LNG project and both Western Australia and Queensland boosted their State outputs to higher levels,” EnergyQuest CEO, Graeme Bethune, said.

In June, the Pluto, Darwin and APLNG plants all produced at above nameplate capacity, with APLNG producing at 110 percent of nameplate.

EnergyQuest noted the national LNG export output would rise further over coming months with Gorgon shipments out of Western Australia now accelerating, Wheatstone plant to commence LNG production next month with first exports in September this year, and Darwin’s Ichthys project due to commence production in 2018.

On the international sales front, Japan, China and Korea continue to be the dominant destinations for Australian exports, comprising 91 percent of deliveries in June. Australia continues to be the largest LNG supplier to Japan and China and the second-largest to Korea after Qatar.

For May, Australia supplied 44 percent of Chinese LNG imports, 31 percent of Japanese imports and 21 percent of Korean imports, EnergyQuest’s report says.