AFPM supports natural gas export in free trade market

18 March 2013 05:41  [Source: ICIS news]

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (ICIS)--The export of liquefied natural gas (LNG) ought to be allowed, the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) said on Sunday.

“Just in general terms, you want the jobs to be in the US, and you want a competitive industry, and exporting becomes a piece of that as a way to ensure everyone has access,” AFPM chairman Jim Mahoney said during a press conference before the group’s annual meeting.

AFPM president Charles Drevna added: “We have enough gas to open up export, and we can help some countries who are perhaps dependent on some other unstable regions or hold hostage to their energies by someone not friendly to the US.”

The AFPM believes the US should allow market to “figure it out”.

“The market is a great source of equilibrium,” Drevna said. “We have always been a free market association. The best way to be a free market is education [and] stand on the principles. We have confidence in the market.”

Exporting natural gas has been a hot topic of debate in the chemical sector, a business that relies on natural gas for about 85% of its feedstock requirements.

In December, the US Department of Energy (DOE) released a report that analyses the effects that LNG exports could have on the US.

Dow Chemical spoke out against the report, saying it failed to consider the importance of manufacturing to the US economy.

Since then, a coalition has been formed to campaign for the restriction of natural gas exports. The America’s Energy Advantage recently called the DOE to consider a separately-funded LNG study on pending export project applications. 

However, ExxonMobil said restricting LNG exports could hurt the US economy.

AFPM’s annual meeting runs from Sunday through Tuesday.

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By: Tracy Dang
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