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Supply squeeze means global gas markets will remain tight next year

Gas demand continues to fall in Europe in response to energy saving measures and soaring high prices. Natural gas markets worldwide have been tightening since 2021 and global gas consumption is expected to decline by 0.8% this year as result of flat demand in the Asia Pacific region and a record 10% contraction in Europe.

Global gas consumption is forecast to increase by just 0.4% next year.

In Europe, gas consumption has fallen by 10% in the first eight months of this year compared to 2021, driven by a 15% drop in the industrial sector as businesses curtailed production due to soaring prices.

Russian pipeline gas supply to Europe has diminished this year. As the winter season approaches, if Moscow continues to carry out a threat to sanction Ukrainian energy firm Naftogaz, one of the last functioning Russian gas supply routes to Europe could be shut, inflaming the global energy crisis.

The IEA forecasts that Europe’s imports will increase by over 60 billion cubic metres (bcm) this year as they continue to try and fill the gap of Russian pipeline gas through increased liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports.

China’s LNG imports are set to rise next year under a series of new contracts, while a colder-than-average winter would also result in additional demand from northeast Asia, further adding to market tightness.

If Russian supply to Europe completely stops from November 1st the IEA have said that EU gas storage would be less than 20% full in February if LNG supply remains robust. But if LNG supply dwindles to low levels it could be 5% full by February.

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The data used in this article was sourced from: