FLNG market to witness major developments in Asia & Africa, soaring gas and electricity demand to impel the regional growth

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The recent plunge in gas rates has deluded many an expert, leading to skepticism regarding the future of FLNG market. Industry analysts have been debating among themselves, with regards to whether the demand for gas will warrant the necessary momentum for FLNG projects to kick off. However, the successful completion of mega projects such as Prelude and Petronas PFLNG1 have put a merciful end to these speculations. The fact that these projects have surpassed major milestones, is a major factor that may lead to the propulsion of FLNG market over the forthcoming years. Since the inception of the new concept of floating regasification in 2005, there has been a remarkable growth in level of vessels that are operating as independent floating storage regasification units (FSRUs). This has significantly escalated the number of importers of LNG that have opted for FSRUs and have in turn made subsequent impact on the FLNG market demand from both operational and income perspectives.

Asia Pacific FLNG Market Size, By Product, 2016 & 2024 (USD Billion)
 Asia Pacific FLNG Market Size, By Product, 2016 & 2024 (USD Billion)

The emergence of floating liquefaction has led to a considerable increase in the global capital expenditure (Capex). Expenditure and income both are expected to increase in the existing FLNG market. For instance, recently in the present year of 2017, the government of Indonesia aims to increase its total LNG import capacity to 35,000MW by 2019. In response to this plan, the government has introduced a program to build gas-fired power plants and upgrade LNG import infrastructure to meet the new electrification targets. Growing number of such governmental initiatives across the globe has predominantly inflected the growth of FLNG industry. Global Market Insights, Inc., in its Floating Liquefied Natural Gas Market 2017-2024, reports that the overall valuation of this industry is set to exceed USD 78 billion by 2024, with global demand surpassing 300 MTPA over 2017-2024.

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Regional trends influencing FLNG industry landscape

Australia

Technological innovation to design high performance and reliable floating infrastructure has stimulated the growth of Australia FLNG industry share. Scheduled to start in 2017, megaprojects such as The Prelude and PNG FLNG are some of the industry’s biggest projects related to floating LNG. Australasia, a region comprising Australia, the island of New Guinea, New Zealand, and neighboring islands in the Pacific Ocean, accounted for the largest but one position in terms of global capex with 22%. Successful operation of the Prelude facility has led to increase in global interest and investments in FLNG industry. As per reliable sources, the project Prelude is estimated to represent 65% of the liquefication capex. Similar investments by emerging LPNG industry players are seen in the region to unlock the growth opportunities. For instance, in 2013, Royal Dutch Shell invested more than USD 12 billion to develop a 3.6Mtpa floating liquefied natural gas unit, which will aid in quick and cost effective natural gas production. The commercial production is likely to commence in 2018.

Asia & Africa

Industry analysts of FLNG market proclaims the investors’ focus to shift from Australasia to Africa and Asia. As per estimates, the spending in Australasia is set to decline post 2018 after the installation of the Prelude FLNG. Surging economic growth and electricity demand in the emerging countries of Asia have drawn the attention of several industry giants to invest in these areas. Asia is projected to account for a massive one-third of the overall FLNG market. Africa and Asia are the key growth areas spectating aggressive deals and financings. Together, both the regions accounted for 54% of the global FLNG industry size. These regions witness frequent energy shortages, which can be met by short-term solutions provided by FLNG. This has strongly influenced the growth of small/mid-scale FLNG market, which is estimated to grow at a rate of 30% over 2017-2024.

A notable rise in the long-term demand for gas, has driven the value of gas reserves. Many regions are looking forward to FLNG shell installation as a viable option pertaining to the cost and infrastructural design of these FLNG vessels. Moreover, the alternative is way more feasible than developing onshore pipelines with high installation costs. Some of the prominent FLNG industry player include Ophir Energy, Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Woodside Petroleum, Noble Energy, Royal Dutch Shell, Petronas, and Golar LNG.

Author Name : Ojaswita Kutepatil

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