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Watch: Northeast Asian LNG demand to get a boost

Nuclear output in Northeast Asia put a damper on LNG demand in the first half of the year, which contributed to the rapid decline in JKM spot benchmark prices. JKM started 2019 close to $9/MMBtu and fell to less than half that value in just a few months. Newly restarted nuclear reactors in Japan and fewer nuclear outages in South Korea were huge contributing factors in this decline. S&P Global Platts LNG Analytics Manager Jeffrey Moore says support could be coming in the second half of the year as both Japan and South Korean nuclear output is expected to follow year-ago levels moving forward. The question now becomes whether this will help support demand to pull volumes away from Europe and ease pressure there, or if new supply coming online will continue to weigh on global gas prices for the months ahead.