Australian liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports have surged by 18.5 per cent to 59.7 million tonnes (Mt) in the 2017–18 financial year, a year-over-year (YoY) gain of 9.3Mt.
Energy export revenues were, meanwhile, up 38 per cent to $30.8 billion, reflecting improved performance and a higher oil price.
The surge has been driven in part by the ramp up of Chevron’s Western Australian LNG projects over the last year, such as Wheatstone, which has produced 2.1Mt since first shipping last November, and Gorgon, which has seen considerable production growth of 6.9Mt to 12.7Mt over the past year, close to its 15.6Mt/y nameplate capacity.
Chevron has become extensively involved in the Western Australian region over the past year. The company purchased three exploration interests in the Carnarvon Basin offshore Western Australia last October by acquiring a 50 per cent interest in 50 trillion cubic feet of gas resources to be shared with partner Woodside Energy.
Deliveries to Australia’s biggest international LNG buyer Japan were up by 2.1Mt to 27.5Mt, accounting for 46 per cent of deliveries.
China was in second place at 34 per cent with 20.3Mt. Growth in deliveries to China was another factor in the surge, with the country purchasing 6.5Mt more LNG than in 2016–2017.