China may more than quadruple imports of liquefied natural gas in the six years through 2015 because of increased consumption of the cleaner-burning fuel, said an official from the nation’s only builder of LNG vessels.
Imports may rise to 25 million metric tons a year as the nation’s energy demand is climbing, Shen Ning, vice director of business and marketing at Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding (Group) Co., said in an interview in Shanghai yesterday. Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding has built all of the nation’s LNG tankers.
China’s LNG imports surged 66 percent to 5.5 million tons last year from a year earlier. The world’s biggest polluting nation wants to triple the use of gas to about 10 percent of energy consumption by 2020.
The shipbuilding company, a unit of China State Shipbuilding Corp., has delivered five LNG vessels to transport the fuel to domestic terminals and is building another 145,000 cubic-meter LNG tanker, Shen said.
The company is developing its third shipyard on Changxing Island in Shanghai, which will more than double its LNG vessel building capacity from three vessels a year currently, he said. The facility will be completed in 2012, he said.