[THE INVESTOR] Korea’s imports of liquefied natural gas reached an all-time high in 2018 amid a spike in purchases from the United States, industry data showed on Jan. 28.
The country’s LNG imports totaled 44.04 million tons last year, up 17.3 percent from the prior year and a new record high, according to the data from industry sources and the Korea International Trade Association.
Qatar was Korea’s largest LNG import source, accounting for 32.4 percent of the total. Australia came next with 17.9 percent, followed by the US with 10.6 percent and Oman with 9.7 percent.
In particular, LNG imports from America more than doubled in 2018 from a year earlier as Korea sharply expanded shale gas purchases.
LNG imports from the US came to 4.66 million tons last year, up a whopping 138 percent from the previous year.
According to the US Energy Information Agency, Korea brought in 4.54 million tons of LNG from America in the first 10 months of last year, accounting for 23.6 percent of its exports at 19.24 million tons.
Korea became the largest LNG importer from the US in 2018, outstripping Mexico. In 2017, Korea was the second-largest LNG importer from America, trailing Mexico.
By Ram Garikipati and newswires (firstname.lastname@example.org)