Australia facing significant gas shortfall in 2023

CANBERRA, Aug 1: The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) on Monday released an interim report in which it warned that the country is facing significant shortfalls in gas supplies in 2023.

It found that Australia is facing a supply shortfall of 56 petajoules (PJ) in the east coast in 2023, which is equivalent to about 10 per cent of domestic demand and called for LNG exporters to keep their uncontracted supply for the domestic market.

“We are also strongly encouraging LNG exporters to immediately increase their supply into the market,” ACCC Chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb said in a statement.

The east coast of Australia is forecast to produce 1,981 PJ of gas in 2023, about 65.6 percent of which will be exported under long-term contracts.

Responding to the report, Treasurer Jim Chalmers said it exposed “alarming” problems with the gas market.

“It projects a significant gas shortfall for next year unless gas producers supply more of their uncontracted or excess gas to the domestic market,” he said.

“It’s critical that our domestic gas supply is secure and competitively priced, particularly when households and businesses are under extreme pressure,” he said.

The report said that without intervention, the 2023 shortfall could be worse than that of 2017, when the former government introduced the Australian Domestic Gas Security Mechanism (ADGSM) to restrict LNG exports and guarantee domestic supply.

The ADGSM is set to expire at the end of 2022, but the federal government has signalled its intention to extend it until 2030.

(IANS)