By Chou Hui Hong
April 7 (Bloomberg) — Singapore’s political neutrality and English-speaking workforce will help the city-state become an Asian hub for LNG trading, according to the government.
“Singapore will become a LNG trading hub within the next five to 10 years,” Seah Moon Ming, chairman of government trade promotion agency IE Singapore, said in an interview on April 2. Singapore’s location, financial system and common law system will also boost its chances of becoming a regional center, he said.
Singapore, Asia’s oil-trading center, has spent S$1.7 billion ($1.4 billion) on its first LNG terminal. Asia has overtaken Europe as the world’s biggest gas importer, accounting for 46 percent of global trade, according to the International Energy Agency, which cites Singapore as best-placed to be the hub for liquefied natural gas.
The country has the only LNG terminal in Asia that can reload cargoes from storage, allowing traders to store gas during low-consumption periods before selling them during peak demand seasons. It is Southeast Asia’s largest receiving facility, with a capacity of 6 million metric tons a year.
Copyright 2014 Bloomberg.