FLNG prospects dim on rising U.S. output
Floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) projects have been firmly relegated to the backburner as global gas producers seek cheaper ways to compete with a surge in U.S. shale supplies and slumping prices, reported Reuters. According to Thomson Reuters Eikon trade flow data, monthly U.S. LNG exports have risen above 1 million tonnes since the start of this year and has hit a record 1.05 million tonnes in February. 8.6 billion cubic feet per day of U.S. gas production (68.3 million tonnes per annum of LNG) is currently under construction and scheduled to come on stream by 2020. With the market headed for oversupply until the early-2020s, it would be difficult to find a bankable new FLNG project in the near term, said the report. FLNG projects - mega tankers fitted with gas extraction and liquefaction facilities - have got kind of superseded by the U.S. being the primary source of new LNG supply, the report said quoting Shell's executive vice president Steve Hill. He attributed it to the switch from Australia to the U.S. that meant floating (production) didn't kind of take off in the way that was expected.