Qatar’s LNG export destinations are undergoing a noticeable shift in 2019, reversing the dominant trend of recent years. Volumes to Qatar’s largest Asian buyers have shrunk considerably (MEES, 1 November & MEES, 1 November). But, rather than signaling production declines, this is the result of rising shipments to smaller Asian economies and the return of Europe.
Qatar has been increasingly dependent on Asian markets in recent years. Asia accounted for nearly 75% of the 76.8mn tons of Qatari LNG imported globally in 2018. This has come as volumes to Europe have cratered, nearly halving from 21.4mn tons in 2011 to just 16.4mn tons in 2018. This was largely driven by the UK, which cut Qatar imports from 16.1mn tons in 2011 to just 2.14mn tons last year as it cut LNG imports generally in favor of piped Norwegian gas. (CONTINUED - 352 WORDS)