With ample recoverable resources, natural gas seems destined for a bright future. It nevertheless faces many challenges to increase its share in the primary energy mix, including insufficient upstream development, inadequate pricing structure, competition from other fuels, and geopolitical issues.
The IEA Medium-Term Gas Market Report 2012 reviews how gas markets managed the challenges of 2011, from the consequences of the Fukushima incident to the unrest in the Middle East and North Africa to a further deteriorating economy. It gives detailed gas supply, demand and trade forecasts up to 2017, by region as well as for key countries, while investigating many of today’s crucial questions:
-Will regional gas markets diverge further or will the shale gas revolution spread worldwide?
-Will North America become a significant LNG exporter?
-Can China meet its goal of doubling gas consumption in four years?
-Will natural gas replace nuclear energy in key OECD member countries?
-Can gas finally overtake coal in the US power sector?
-Can a spot price emerge in Asia?
Amid a fragile economy and widely diverging regional gas prices, the report provides an in-depth look at future changes in trade patterns as markets absorb a second wave of LNG supply. The Medium-Term Gas Market Report tests the upper limit of gas demand in the United States, analyses European gas consumption’s struggle to recover, and assesses the potential of new suppliers.