The Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) has published a new report exploring global gas market prospects and its impact on energy demand and supply, economic growth and socioeconomic developments through 2050.
According to the Global Gas Outlook 2050, while Africa will record a 2.1% annual increase in its population through 2050, the continent’s demand for energy will rise by 82% by 2050. The study states that gas will account for 30% of Africa’s energy mix by 2050 and together with renewables will be crucial in driving energy access across the continent.
The GECF further predicts Africa’s natural gas production to increase from 260 billion cubic meters (bcm) in 2021 to 585 bcm by 2050, owing to energy security, affordability and reliability on the back of maximal exploitation of local energy resources becoming the top concerns for African policymakers.
However, with limited investments across the industry disrupting growth over the past few years, the GECF report highlights that Africa will need to see up to $1.7 trillion in investments being made towards upstream activities for the continent to achieve a production rate of 585 bcm by 2030.
The report adds that with an increasing number of African countries developing energy strategies which are based on natural gas and renewables to address energy poverty and economic expansion, the share of Africa’s gas sector on the global market will expand to over 11% of all gas supplies by 2050, with the majority of the supply set to be directed towards power generation.
”While global gas trade is expected to rise by 36% through 2050, driven by increases in LNG trading, Africa is set to record a significant increase in pipelines, liquefied natural gas and regasification spending through 2050,” said HE Eng. Mohamed Hamel, Secretary General of the GECF.
Additionally, while energy monetization is a top priority for Africa to expand gross domestic product (GDP), the trading of gas will be crucial in helping the continent to ensure the availability of energy investments and capital to drive social development projects. The GECF anticipates Africa’s GDP to rise from $2.5 trillion in 2021 to $7.1 trillion by 2050.