The outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic all over the world has disturbed the political, social, economic and financial structures of the whole world. The strongest of the economies around the globe are struggling to cope with the situation in the aftermath of an unprecedented demand shock and a complete shutdown of all economic activities that drive growth. This unexpected pandemic presents profound challenges for the Global Natural Gas Industry, as it does for the energy system as a whole and the economy at large.
Recognising the need to bring the gamut of issues surrounding the pandemic on the forefront, the Federation of Indian Petroleum Industry (FIPI) in association with EY organized a webinar on navigating the challenges in the current gas market on May 01, 2020. The webinar saw attendance of over 350 participants from more than 75 companies. In his opening remarks, Dr. R.K. Malhotra, DG FIPI stated that the outlook for global natural gas demand was optimistic before COVID-19 pandemic backed by steady growth throughout the world, however if delayed stabilization happens, the global demand in 2020 will take a hit and may fall well below the 2019 levels. He further stated that oversupply and demand shrinkage have led to collapse of global prices of LNG and this can compete with coal for power generation in favour of gas in India. Among the gas consuming sectors, CGD was the most impacted with restricted transportation, non-essential industries are shutdown. However, domestic-PNG demand had gone up while fertilizer, power and petrochemical sectors were moderately impacted. After the opening remarks by Dr. Malhotra, EY’s experts shared their views on the Global and Indian gas fundamentals and outlook. This was followed by an interactive panel discussion with eminent leaders from the gas industry and finally the Chairman PNGRB shared the regulatory perspective towards the end of the webinar.