The natural gas production is very limited in Japan as compared to the consumption rate. The production of natural gas in Japan is mainly associated with the companies named International Petroleum Exploration Corporation (INPEX), JAPEX, Mitsubishi, Mitsui, Nippon Oil. Other Japanese oil and gas companies are actively involved in domestic and international natural gas exploration and production. The natural gas is mostly consumed by power sector, residential/commercial sector and industrial sector. The gas is consumed as fuel in various manufacturing industries such as food industry, textiles, pulp and paper, ceramics, iron and steel, non-ferrous metals and machinery production.
Due to earthquake struck on March 2011, the demand for LNG has increased drastically in last one year. The LNG import rose by more than 10% in 2011 and by monthly average of more than 15% from April 2011 till Feb 2012. The pre-earthquake estimation of LNG imports’ increased moderately when compared from January till March 2011. The consumption of LNG in electric utilities’ increased by 20% to more than 2 Billion Cubic Feet during 2011. Japan imports LNG back from 1969 when it started importing from Alaska. Currently, LNG imports are mainly from Malaysia, Australia, Indonesia, Qatar and Russia. The nation has imported a record of 70.008 Million Ton in 2010 which is up from 66.354 Million Ton in 2009.
“Japan LNG Demand Forecast 2016” report gives comprehensive overview on the following aspect related to LNG market in Japan: