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Energy

Coronavirus curbs LNG demand in China, Japan and South Korea

China gas imports to grow just 1.8% this year, while Japan's will fall by 1.2%

A liquefied natural gas receiving terminal and power plant in Chiba, Japan.

TOKYO/SHANGHAI/SEOUL -- Asian demand for liquefied natural gas, which was driving growth in the global market, is slowing after the novel coronavirus brought industrial activity in the region to a standstill.

The super-chilled natural gas, which emits less greenhouse gas than coal, has become increasingly popular over the past decade in Asian countries from China to Japan and South Korea as a fuel for use in the industrial and electricity sectors. Global demand reached 354.7 million tons in 2019, increasing 13% from the year before.

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