AsiaGasGreater China

China surpasses Japan as the world’s largest LNG importer

China has overtaken Japan as the world’s largest importer of LNG, adding to a long list of commodities where the People’s Republic ranks as the number one consumer.

Customs data from China and Japan show China bought 6.65m tonnes of LNG in August while Japan purchased 6.3m tonnes.

In total, the eight-month stats show China has unloaded 51.898m tonnes of LNG while Japan imported 51.378m tonnes.

“Strong economic performance, supportive government regulation and investment in LNG and gas infrastructure have led to an extended period of growth for China’s LNG demand,” ICIS LNG Edge said in a recent note.

A raft of LNG newbuilds are under construction at yards in China to handle the nation’s expected continued growth in gas imports.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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