Oz Ships Record LNG in July
Australian LNG shipments in July were a record 7mn metric tons (102 cargoes), up from 6.2mn mt (90 cargoes) in June, thanks to Pluto coming back on production after a month-long maintenance shutdown, advisory firm EnergyQuest said in its monthly LNG report August 14.
July shipments were a record 82.8mn mt/yr on an annualised basis, well ahead of Qatar's nameplate capacity of 77mn mt/yr. Average capacity utilisation was up in July due to Pluto coming online and more cargoes from Gorgon and Wheatstone, EnergyQuest said. Shell's Prelude project continues to increase production after its first cargo was shipped in mid-June.
Australian production in the financial year 2020 (July 2019-June 2020) is likely to surpass Qatar when EnergyQuest expects production to be around 80mn mt, boosted by a full year of production from Ichthys and Prelude floating LNG project.
Qatar though is planning a major North Field expansion project which will leave every other ountry trailing in its wake from the first half of next decade, with engineering contracts awarded but no equity partners yet announced.