Coming wave of gas puts focus on finding new shores
By Ron Bousso and Oleg Vukmanovic
LONDON (Reuters) - Energy giants such as Royal Dutch Shell and Total are looking to build terminals and power plants in new markets to soak up the industry's rapidly burgeoning supply.
Companies have invested billions in plants to produce liquefied natural gas (LNG) in places such as Australia and the United States.
But gas demand growth is slowing, prices are down and the LNG volumes companies are set to produce will exceed those even major buyers such as China and Japan can absorb.
That has turned attention to the downstream market and opportunities to create new markets from Ivory Coast to remote Indonesian islands by building gas-fired power plants, pipelines, regasification and storage terminals.
"We are ready to go downstream as much as it takes to unlock gas demand," said Laurent Vivier, president for the gas division at Total.
"We need to be present in downstream ourselves, to create demand and unlock bottlenecks along the chain including regasification, pipelines and power plants."
Total aims to triple the number of its gas and power markets and raise its annual LNG output to 20 million tonnes and its trading to 15 million tonnes by 2020.
The company is taking part in LNG infrastructure tenders, including several gas-fired power plants, in countries including Indonesia, Chile, Ivory Coast, Ghana and Morocco, Vivier said. Continued...