The global natural gas market is forecast to post surpluses in each of 2013 and 2014 as demand growth remains restrained and supply continues to expand. The global gas market has shown systematic increases in surpluses since 2008.
Global gas production is expected to grow at an average annual rate of 3.2% during the 2013-14 period, down from a growth rate of 3.9% in 2012; while global gas consumption is projected to increase by an annual average rate of 3% during the covered period, mainly due to strong demand growth in Asia. However, the Eurozone’s demand for gas would likely remain limited due to member countries’ weak economic performance.
Overall, U.S. natural gas Henry Hub prices are expected to significantly rise in 2013, partly due to limited production capacity. U.S. natural gas prices are forecast to grow by 41% year-on-year to $3.89 per million British thermal units (Btu) on average in 2013, while European natural gas prices are projected to rise by 2.4% to $11.8 per million Btu on average this year.
Economist Intelligence Unit, Byblos Research