China's natgas consumption seen at 230 bcm in 2015: NDRC

BEIJING Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:20pm EDT

BEIJING (Reuters) - Natural gas consumption in China, the world's top energy user, is expected to be 230 billion cubic meters (bcm) in 2015, while supply of gas, including imported liquefied natural gas (LNG) and unconventional gas, is expected to exceed 260 bcm, the National Development and Reform Commission said on Friday.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) said in June that China's natural gas demand reached 130 billion cubic meters in 2011, almost 5 percent of the country's total energy demand.

IEA forecasts China's demand will climb to 273 bcm by 2017, up from 130 bcm in 2011-- an increase of 13 percent per year. That would rank China as the world's third-largest gas user behind the United States and Russia.

(Reporting by Judy Hua and Fayen Wong; Editing by Michael Urquhart)