South Korean gas consumption is expected to rise this year, while China’s gas demand is booming and will drive up regional consumption. However, gas use in Japan looks set to fall on an annual basis.
China’s gas demand increased by 22% on an annual basis in April and is expected to see further robust gains in May, supported by the government’s gasification policies. Although growth is not anticipated to continue at this pace for the remainder of the year, strong increases in demand are still likely. The country is expected to consume around 222 billion cubic metres of gas in 2017, an increase of 8% from 2016. Strong economic growth and a push to switch from coal to gas in key provinces is driving demand. Gas is targeted to account for 8.3-10% of China’s energy mix by 2020, but the figure is set to be greater in some provinces. For example, the regional government of Jiangsu is aiming for gas to account for 12.6% of the province’s energy mix by 2020, up from 6.6% in 2015. While gasification in inland provinces will also be essential to meet nationwide targets, the gains expected in coastal provinces will help push up China’s overall use of the fuel.
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