New Pakistan LNG import projects find the going tough

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Pakistan’s economic growth is accelerating, thanks in part to the easing of energy shortages with the start-up of two LNG import terminals since 2015. GDP growth had been languishing at around 4%/year, but in fiscal year 2016-17 it rose to 5.3% and the International Monetary Fund expects 7% by the 2020s.

Much will depend on how quickly the nation can ease its still severe gas shortage and a consequent electricity supply-demand gap estimated at 6 GW. The government has pinned its hopes on rapid growth of LNG imports, from 4.6 mtpa in 2017 to over 30 mtpa by the mid-2020s. More projects are in train, but even the front-runners are finding the going tougher than anticipated.

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