The region’s total natural gas recoverable reserves amounted to 3.48 thousand million tonnes of oil equivalent, representing around 2% of the global gas reserves. Top countries per proved recoverable reserves include China (3,841 bcm), Japan (20.9 bcm) and Taiwan (6.2 bcm). Top producing countries include China (138 bcm), Japan (5 bcm), Taiwan (0.4 bcm) and South Korea (0.3 bcm).

China’s natural gas policy aims to increase its share in the total energy mix from 6% currently to 10% by 2020. Production and consumption of natural gas are estimated to increase owing to the government policies in favour of natural gas use. The main gas-producing regions include:

• Sichuan: with two high-sulphur natural gas fields – Puguang (peak production of 9.8 bcm in 2012) and Yuanba, both operated by Sinopec.

• Chuandongbei: Luojiazhai, Gunziping, Tieshanpo, Dukouhe and Qilibei gas fields developed by Chevron in three stages.

• Xinjiang: Tarim field developed by Petrochina is the second largest producer of natural gas with production in 2014 above 25 bcm.

• Ordos: The Ordos basin the largest gas producer in China (37.7 bcm in 2014, representing 31% of the country’s total gas production for the year), with important gas fields being Sulige (production of 17.6 in the first nine months of 2015) and Daqing fields (production of 3.4 bcm in 2014).

• Offshore: Yacheng-13 field in the western South China Sea, Liwan 3-1 gas field – China’s first deepwater gas project.

China is a net importer of natural gas, with imports hitting a record high in September 2016 of 5.7 million tonnes. (Source: BMI Research, 2016)

Japan is the largest importer of LNG in the world, accounting for around 36% of the global market in 2015. Main suppliers include Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei and Qatar. Production of natural gas in the country is not predicted to increase due to the natural declines at existing gas fields, in particular at INPEX’s Minami-Nagaoka field, in production for over 30 years, and low chances of major gas discoveries in the next decade.

Taiwan is a marginal producer of natural gas and does not have major resources of natural gas. The state-owned firm CPC imports LNG mainly for power generation, which accounted for 82.6% of LNG consumption in 2014.

Gas Production

Gas Production129Mtoe per year

Gas Recoverable Reserves3.48thousand Mtoe

Gas Recoverable Reserves by region

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Gas Recoverable Reserves by country

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Top Gas producing countries

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Gas data represents natural gas only, for unconventional gas please refer country notes within the WER 2013 report gas chapter.