The future of Australia's gas and LNG export market: An East Asian perspective
July 26 2017
The Australian gas sector is at a dynamic stage due to Australia’s expected ascension to the world’s largest LNG exporter by next year. The increasing export of LNG, at a time of expiring long-term contracts in the domestic market, causes debate on the high price for domestic consumers. There is no quick solution to balancing various interests. Changes to existing commercial arrangements through legislation and state intervention may be a quick solution to mitigate domestic market price pressure, but maynot be in the nation’s long-term interest.
While domestic issues are heatedly debated, East Asia markets - Australian LNG’s primary destinations - are less focused but are at a critical stage. The changes to the structure of Australia’s principal LNG markets in East Asia include: revisions to the reliance on long-term contracts for LNG trade; the pricing benchmark used in such contracts; regional market integration through the development of trans-boundary pipelines and LNG trading hubs; and indirectly, national electricity and gas market liberalisation that may also increase the demand for flexibility in the prices and terms of LNG trade. Given that LNG is expected to become Australia’s second most valuable commodity export after iron ore, the stakes are too high to be ignored.
With these questions in mind, the Australia-China Relations Institute (ACRI) at the University of Technology Sydney is pleased to present a panel of experts to discuss the issues of our nation’s current and future significance.
About the panellists:
Professor Peter Hartley is George and Cynthia Mitchell Professor of Economics at Rice University. He is also a Rice Scholar of Energy Economics at the Baker Institute. He has worked on energy economics issues for 36 years, focusing originally on electricity, but also including work on natural gas, oil, coal, nuclear and renewable energy. He co-created the well-known Rice University/ Baker Institute World Gas Trade Model. He has also published in other areas including theoretical and applied issues in money and banking, business cycles, and international finance. He received his PhD from the University of Chicago and was an Assistant Professor of Economics at Princeton University before coming to Rice. Originally from Australia, he has also held visiting appointments at Monash University, Melbourne University, the Australian National University and the University of Western Australia.
Ms Fiona Poynter is VP LNG, Asia-Pacific, Argus Media. Fiona Poynter joined Argus in 2006, having begun her career in the energy industry at Eni UK. Fiona is responsible for the generation fuels business development across Asia-Pacific, with a particular focus on LNG. Fiona moved to Sydney with Argus in 2012, having previously worked in the firm’s London headquarters as editor of Argus LNG Daily and Argus European Emissions. She also spent a number of years working on the European natural gas desk. During her time at Eni, Fiona was responsible for gas sales to the company’s UK-based industrial and commercial customers.
Dr Xunpeng Shi is Principal Research Fellow at the Australia-China Relations Institute, UTS and Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Energy Studies Institute, National University of Singapore. He is also serving as President of the Chinese Economics Society Australia (CESA) and an Associate Editor of Journal of Management for Modelling. He was previously working in Singapore, Brunei and Indonesia on energy policy with an ASEAN and East Asian focus. Prior to starting his PhD studies in 2006, Xunpeng had various management and professional positions in China’s leading energy institutes and central government agencies. Shi has published widely on energy economics, policy and East Asian energy issues, including East Asian natural gas market issues, in top energy journals.