China’s gas demand has picked up pace, while earthquakes in Japan could add to delays to nuclear restarts.
China’s gas demand was up by 19% on an annual basis in February, to 18 billion cubic metres. This followed an 18% annual rise in January. The strong growth was driven in part by cold snaps, which forced up consumption in key demand areas - and the weather could continue to provide further demand side support during the northern hemisphere summer. Above average temperatures in key gas consuming regions could push up air conditioning consumption this summer, and with it, demand for gas-fired power generation. The greater use of gas in key demand regions in southern and eastern China is expected to help support offtake on a national level. China’s gas demand is expected to rise by around 10% on an annual basis in H1.
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