Global LNG - An Industry in Disruptive Transformationby Peter Cameron, Energy Markets Global Limited, UK
The global Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) industry is going through disruptive transformation. This term is often heard but one we can now see applied to a large capital intensive industry. For decades, the LNG business had been traditional, cosy, conservative and uncompetitive, with a few large players, opaque and rigid.
We consider the drivers that make an industry change, particularly an energy industry and the characteristics of energy markets. We find that LNG meets the criteria of an industry ready for change. Three key factors drive transformation, namely an industry wide crisis, action to enable the business environment and then the market developing by itself.
Drivers for LNG change include technological (FSRU, FLNG, supersized ships, Mini-LNG, bunkering) and commercial (global LNG oversupply, regulatory, new demand and supply centres, new business models, new players, new trading patterns). Any of these can provide an industry crisis but among the most important is the entry of the USA, set to become the world’s marginal LNG supplier (which sets the price) and also largest supplier, with different business models. The combined effects are transformational.
Change is continuing, with the growing influence of the USA, LNG hubs, bunkering and mini LNG. The sleepy traditional LNG world is changing and will continue to do so. Coronavirus has a large impact but the LNG world was already transforming.
Members should consider what further disruption will come. They should also identify additional value in gas from previously stranded supplies and demand which can now be opened up.
Mr Peter Cameron is Founder and Managing Director of Energy Markets Global, a UK based international energy markets consultancy. He is also lecturer in Business Strategy for Middlesex University (UK) Oil and Gas MBA.
Peter advises governments and companies globally on the economic and commercial aspects of gas markets. He has over 25 years of worldwide project experience (long and short term). He was Chairman of the International Services Board of the Society of British Gas Industries and represented the British Government on the gas sector worldwide. Previously, Peter was Corporate Strategist and Planner for British Gas (now Shell).