Australian LNG exports value to grow to $37 B in 2018-19 By Martin Kovacs, 7 Jul 2017

The Resources and Energy Quarterly – June Quarter 2017, released by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, has estimated a 25% increase in Australian resource and energy export earnings in 2016-17, with earnings estimated to have reached $205 B.

The report forecasts that in the next two years LNG will be the largest contributor to export volumes growth.

The report forecasts that the value of Australia’s LNG exports will increase from an estimated $23 B in 2016-17 to $37 B in 2018-19, with growth in earnings to “be supported by higher export volumes and, to a lesser extent, higher prices”, with LNG forecast to overtake metallurgical coal as the second largest resource and energy export in 2018-19.

APPEA Director Matthew Doman has stated that the report “rightly recognises the growing value to Australia of our successful LNG industry, but it also points to emerging threats on the horizon”.

“While global supply capacity is set to increase from 285 MMt to 382 MMt by 2019, almost half of this increase will come from the five new export projects under construction in the US,” Doman commented.

“Qatar, the world’s largest LNG producer, has also signalled its intention to massively increase its own export capacity.

“So, Australia may soon find itself caught between an established LNG giant determined to regain its market share and an emerging challenger hungry for success. A supportive policy and regulatory framework in Australia is vital to the industry meeting these competitive challenges.”

Doman stated that the industry's ongoing success cannot be taken for granted.

“Australia can succeed as a high-cost, low-risk country, but we cannot succeed as a high-cost, high-risk country,” he stated. “Policies that undermine our competitiveness or tarnish our investment reputation risk doing significant damage to our LNG industry and, ultimately, our economy.”