China is one of the major emerging markets in LNG bunkering. The country is already the second-largest LNG importer in the world. The China LNG bunkering market is expected to grow at a CAGR of more than 5.9% over the forecast period. The prime factor, such as the IMO sulfur cap regulation and the country’s commitment toward reducing greenhouse gas emission is expected to drive the adoption of LNG as a marine fuel in the market. However, the significant decline in traffic as a result of the US-China trade war which affects adversely on import and export values of the country is likely to restrain the LNG bunkering market over the forecast period.
- Ferries and OSV segment is expected to dominate in the China LNG bunkering market during the forecast period.
- Generating new demand for LNG, including overseas LNG value chain investments is likely to provide an opportunity for LNG bunkering in the country over the forecast period.
- Increasing demand for natural gas is expected to drive the China LNG bunkering market over the forecast period.
Key Market Trends
Ferries and OSV Segment to Dominate the Market
- Ferries are vessels used to carry cargoes across the water. A passenger ferry is used as a water bus or water taxi to travel from one place to another. As of 2018, the LNG fueled ferries in operation were 41 and under construction was 25 making it as dominant in the end-user segment.
- Offshore support vessel segment is also expected to dominate in the segment, owing to it being relatively cost-effective in terms of offshore exploration and production activities. They also help to provide necessary supplies while undertaking exploration, drilling, and construction activities.
- China’s offshore oil & gas industry is dominant, which in turn is likely to boost the offshore support vessel for the E&P activities. According to Baker Hughes, the china offshore rig count was 38 in May 2020.
- In addition, China is set to develop its first offshore bunkering facility for LNG at the port of Shenzhen. On June 2020, an agreement was signed between the government of Shenzhen, Yantian Port Group and state-owned energy major PetroChina, which will supply LNG for the project.
- Hence, the country is expected to have a positive demand for Ferries and OSV in the LNG bunkering market, during the forecast period.
Natural Gas Demand is Expected to Drive the Market
- China LNG Bunkering market maintained its growth momentum in 2019. With coal-to-gas conversion policies, GDP expansion, and industrial recovery, the country’s gas consumption is increasing year-on-year. However, with domestic output and pipeline imports unable to keep up, LNG is needed to bridge this gap.
- Major factors that are driving the demand for natural gas in the country are greater urbanization, and rising per capita consumption.
- In China, natural gas consumption was 307.3 billion cubic meters in 2019. The natural gas consumption grew by 8.6%, more than previous year consumption owing to the increased demand for natural gas in the country.
- China is likely to become as large of a demand center for natural gas than the European Union by 2040, presenting a wide range of opportunities for the market in the coming years.
The China LNG bunkering market is consolidated. Some of the key players in the market include ENN Energy Holdings Ltd, Total S.A., and JERA Co Inc.
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