2018 marked another successful year for the Australia-China LNG Forum. With the overall theme of “Delivering Through Collaboration”, this year’s forum attracted over 120 key stakeholders from Australian, Chinese and international firms involved in the well-established and every-growing LNG trade relationship between Australia and China. Attendees included government officials, policymakers, state and private companies involved in all stages of the LNG value chain.
China is currently experiencing severe gas shortages due to a strong push to use clean energy. China LNG imports are experiencing double-digit growth and will continue in the next five to ten years to become the largest LNG importer in the world. Conversely, Australia is on track to become the world’s largest LNG exporter, with significant un-committed and un-developed gas resources, as well as favorable proximity to Asian markets. With this in mind the Australia-China LNG forum has been an important platform for discussing the abundance of collaboration opportunities for both Australian and Chinese enterprises involved in the sector.
The West Australian Minister for Mines and Petroleum; Commerce and Industrial Relations; Electoral Affairs; Asian Engagement, the Hon. Bill Johnston MLA represented the WA Premier and officially opened the event. Minister Johnston highlighted the WA Government’s recently established LNG Jobs Taskforce, aimed at establishing Perth as an international LNG hub which would support among other things export oriented operations in a similar fashion to Aberdeen and Houston.
Following the opening address, the first day of the conference focused on the outlook for the bilateral LNG trade relationship between the two countries as well as contractual and finance topics. Keynote addresses were delivered by the Hon. Colin Barnett, former West Australia Premier and Hu Weiping, President of the Chinese Overseas Development Association (CODA). Mr Barnett highlighted the potential benefits of developing an LNG project in Australia with China being the foundation customer, as well as urging would be operators to carefully consider environmental and heritage issues when selected any future project sites in WA, given past challenges. Mr Hu spoke on the needs of China's LNG industry and current government policies. He proposed that both China and Australia establish a more effective LNG price system to improve transaction efficiency.
The conference’s second day focused on LNG processing, shipping and marine fuel with particular interest in the LNG fuel technology for shipping. The conference concluded with a panel discussion featuring industry experts from CODA, Hudong Zhonghua Shipbuilding, the North West Shelf Joint Venture, ICBC and the LNG Marine Fuel Institute as well as the Hon. Colin Barnett.
Organised by the Western Australia Chinese Petroleum Association (WACPA) with the support of CODA, ACBC, CCCA, Australia-China LNG Fund and LNG Marine Fuel Institute, the 2018 Australia-China LNG Forum main objective was to bring together Australia and China LNG players again to further enhance win-win collaborations for delivering LNG and high investment returns.