Qatar has rapidly growing liquids production. For years
it has been producing at near full capacity despite the country being a
member of OPEC but had reduced output a little in 2008/2009. Onshore
production is declining slowly but offshore production is increasing as
a result of new investment in existing fields and, more especially, due
to increasing liquids production from the giant North gas field.
Qatar’s gas production is also surging ahead. The North field,
discovered in 1979, came onstream in 1991 and output rises as each new
LNG train is brought into operation. The Dolphin project, that sends
piped gas to the United Arab Emirates, began producing in 2006 and a
large GTL plant is also being built.
Qatar has a small population and consumes modest amounts
of oil. Consumption is now rising only very slowly as are exports which
should peak in 2013.
Qatar is a relatively large consumer of gas and will continue to
increase consumption, replacing oil wherever possible. Gas exports rose
slowly up to 2006 but are now increasing rapidly as new LNG conversion
plants are brought onstream and as the Dolphin project expands to
satisfy growth in demand in neighbouring countries.