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Top LNG exporter Qatar warns gas prices are at unhealthy levels

Gas plans in the MENA region are bucking the global trend, Apicorp has projected, with a particular boost coming from Qatar and its major LNG project.
LNG on the move

Qatar, the world’s biggest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG), warned that prices have climbed to “unhealthy” levels.

“While natural gas prices are an outcome of basic market fundamentals including supply and demand, the current price levels observed in global markets are unhealthy for both producers and consumers,” the Gulf nation’s Energy Minister Saad Al-Kaabi said after a virtual discussion with Kadri Simson, the European Union’s commissioner for energy.

His comments come amid a crisis in gas markets, with prices in Europe and parts of Asia having surged in recent weeks. They eased on Wednesday following comments from Russia’s President Vladimir Putin suggesting that Moscow could raise exports.

Qatar is spending around $30 billion to increase production, though that will take years. Kaabi said last month the country would struggle to boost output in the near term as it was pumping at maximum capacity.

“They are queuing up for LNG,” he said on Sept. 21. “We have huge demand from all our customers and unfortunately we can’t cater for everyone.”

Meanwhile, International Gas Union President Joe Kang made it clear why he believes “gas works” at the St Petersburg International Gas Forum this week.

“The world has understandable concerns about emissions, we hope that it can be seen that gas is part of the solution.”

“Natural gas today and a portfolio of renewable and decarbonised gasses in the future are and will continue to be the catalyst for and foundation of a more sustainable energy system.”

High gas prices threaten to derail potential demand in emerging markets, particularly in Asia.

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