The 24th Ministerial Meeting of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) concluded that medium-term tightness will continue in the global natural gas market, easing only after 2025 when new projects start coming online. It also pinned the current supply-demand imbalance on a lack of investment since 2015 and noted “dramatic” changes in both market function and physical flows while cautioning against “politically driven” price caps and other attempts manage market dynamics.
GECF said that geopolitical tensions had exacerbated the supply-demand imbalance, with Europe becoming the preferred destination for LNG cargoes as its typical pipeline supplies dwindled in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. But cautioned that “artificial intervention in market functioning can only aggravate market tightness, discourage investment, and be detrimental to producers and consumers alike.”
The meeting reaffirmed that natural gas “will play a pivotal role in sustainable development and in a just and inclusive energy transition.”
Forum members are Algeria, Bolivia, Egypt (this year’s meeting host), Equatorial Guinea, Iran, Qatar, Russia, Trinidad and Tobago, and Venezuela. The meeting was also attended by observers Angola, Azerbaijan, Iraq, Malaysia, Mozambique, and the UAE. The 25th GECF Ministerial Meeting will convene October 2023 in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea.