Speaking at a presentation sponsored by Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs Center on Global Energy Policy in New York, Jean-Baptiste Dubreuil, senior natural gas analyst at IEA stated that American LNG exports are expected to make a giant leap to over 100 billion bcm in 2024, surpassing the current leaders, Australia and Qatar.

In addition, Chinese LNG imports are expected to surge to over 100 bcm in 2024, topping those of current world leader Japan.

On the contrary, Japan's LNG imports have experienced a crucial decrease since peaking in 2014 as some nuclear plants halted operations for safety inspections and testing, following an earthquake and a tsunami destroyed the Fukushima nuclear plant in 2011.

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In the meantime, IEA expects the global LNG demand to increase by 4% a year through 2024. In order to meed this demand, Dubreuil said that  developers made final investment decisions in 2018 to add about 29 bcm of new export capacity and have doubled that to 58 bcm so far in 2019.

He added that later this year developers could decide on additional investments that could add over 120 bcm of capacity, along with about 30 bcm in the United States and 43 bcm in Qatar.

IEA's senior natural gas analyst added that China's demand for natural gas that saw a rapid increase by 18% in 2018, is due to environmental regulations, as consumers change from coal to gas. Thus, IEA expects that China's increase in gas consumption would achieve an annual rate of 8% through 2024 due to slower economic growth.

Concluding, the US production will grow over 1 trillion bcm in 2024.