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Energy Library


The UAE’s gas sector has long presented some curious paradoxes. Despite having the world’s ninth-largest reserves, the country is a net importer of gas.

It is one of only five countries that exports and imports liquefied natural gas (LNG) — the others have far-flung territories that need tankers to transfer gas between them. But policy changes in recent years will help to resolve those paradoxes and move the nation’s gas business into a new era.

Much of the UAE’s gas production, which is associated with oil output, is inflexible. Demand varies widely by season, while oil production can be curtailed by factors such as commitments under the Opec+ agreement.

Until the start-up of nuclear and solar power in recent years, the country was almost entirely reliant on gas for generating electricity, while it is also a fuel and feedstock for industries such as petrochemicals.

The strong economic and population growth over the past two decades led to surging demand, outstripping, at least temporarily, the amount that could be produced domestically.

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