Competition increases as US approves another LNG project

THE US Energy Department has approved another liquefied natural gas export project, increasing the competition for $70 billion worth of Australian plants that are nearing completion.

The US has now approved six projects to export LNG to countries it does not have free trade agreements with, such as Japan, and there are about 20 awaiting approval.

The Australian reports lower gas prices in the US and export approvals have intensified future competition for Australia's exports, and Deutsche Bank analyst John Hirjee said the recent moves by the US would present more competition for Australian suppliers serving Asia.

"The advantage the US will have is that it seen as a cheaper source of supply," Mr Hirjee said.

Gladstone is leading the way for Australia's future exports with three LNG projects being built on Curtis Island.

HSBC Australia and New Zealand chief economist Paul Bloxham said there was still a long way to go before the US would be a big exporter.

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