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Europe to Become ‘Massive’ Buyer of U.S. LNG, Trump Says


Europe will build more terminals to import U.S. liquefied natural gas, the head of the European Commission told U.S. President Donald Trump during a meeting aimed at averting a transatlantic trade war.

“They want very much to do that, and we have plenty of it,” Trump said, referring to the U.S. shale boom, which has unleashed record supplies of the heating and power-plant fuel. “They will be a massive buyer, and they will be able to diversify their energy supply.”

Donald Trump and Jean-Claude Juncker on July 25. Photographer: Kevin Dietsch/Pool via Bloomberg

The comments were part of a bigger agreement in which Trump and Jean-Claude Juncker, the European Commission president, said they would suspend new tariffs while negotiating over trade. The two leaders also pledged to expand imports of soybeans and to lower industrial tariffs, excluding autos.

LNG imports to Europe are poised to rise almost 20 percent by 2040 from 2016 levels, according to International Energy Agency. While Russia has long been the region’s top supplier, it’s now facing significant challenges from both the U.S. and Qatar, rivals with vast natural gas reserves.

Trump and Juncker spoke to the media after meeting at the White House. The comments quickly sparked investor reaction for both Cheniere Energy Inc., America’s largest exporter of LNG, and Tellurian Inc., which is working to get its export project in Louisiana approved.

Liquefied Natural Gas Ltd., which has a fully permitted project in Louisiana, currently has a number of active discussions ongoing with potential European customers, according to spokesman Micah Hirschfield.

“Any resolution to trade differences is a good thing for deal making in the LNG space,” Hirschfield said by telephone. “This is great news today and we hope it leads to even better news moving forward.”

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