The most stunning anecdote about how the shale dynamics have upended the global energy market comes from this reversal of hydrocarbon trade,
Two cargoes of US liquefied natural gas from Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass plant in Louisiana have been delivered to Kuwait and Dubai in recent months to meet the rapidly growing demand for energy.
And more on how the US shale exports have been transforming the global hydrocarbons market,
The Sabine Pass plant shipped its first cargo in February, and has already sent LNG to seven countries: Argentina, Chile, Brazil, India and Portugal, as well as Dubai and Kuwait... Those additional supplies are depressing prices, making LNG a more attractive fuel for power generation, and low-cost floating regasification plants have made it easier for countries to become importers. Kuwait’s LNG imports tripled from 1m tonnes in 2012 to 3.04m tonnes last year, according to the Middle East Economic Survey. Egypt and Jordan became LNG importers for the first time last year. Qatar is the world’s largest LNG exporter, but over the next few years it is set to be toppled by Australia and rivalled by the US. The International Energy Agency has forecast that by 2040 gas demand in the Middle East will almost double, so the region could become an increasingly important market for US LNG.
As regards oil, US continues to import about 1.6 million barrels a day from the Middle East, down from 2.4 mbd in 2003-04.
I think an even bigger transformation will be when more liquefaction terminals on the US east coast come on-line. It could lead to the emergence of a single global market in natural gas.