The burgeoning US natural-gas industry is largely responsible for the high volume of shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG) through the expanded Panama Canal, the waterway’s manager said Monday.
Nine percent of the more than 1,500 vessels – nearly six per day – that have transited the canal in the one year since the expansion was completed were carrying LNG, administrator Jorge Quijano said.
That number far exceeds the forecast made a decade ago at the start of the project to expand the inter-oceanic channel, when the United States “was not an exporter, but rather an importer of gas,” he said.
Prior to the expansion, the canal could not accommodate the tankers used to transport LNG.
Even with a decline in global trade, the Canal’s revenues have increased by 12% since last October.