BANGKOK, Dec 28 (Reuters) - Thailand’s natural gas demand is expected to reach 5.14 billion cubic feet per day (cfd) in 2015 due to rising demand from the industrial and transportation sectors, Energy Minister Wannarat Charnnukul said on Monday.
The projection was based on the assumption that natural gas will be used as fuel to generate power from 2009 to 2015, when Thai gas-fired power plants are expected to generate 6,890 megawatts of electricity under the latest power development plan.
Natural gas demand from the industrial sector was expected to rise an average 11 percent a year during 2009-2015, and 23 percent from the transportation sector, Wannarat said in a statement.
The National Energy Policy Council, chaired by Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, on Monday approved the country’s natural gas supply plan. It was also in the process of reviewing the country’s power development plan to be in line with growing demand.
State-controlled PTT (PTT.BK), the country’s sole gas supplier, said in November it expected natural gas demand to rise 10.6 percent in 2010 to 3.95 billion cubic feet per day.
PTT has prepared to seek more natural gas from the Gulf of Thailand and imports from neighbouring countries to meet the rising demand, the statement said.
Thailand plans to import natural gas from offshore Blocks M9 and M11 in the Gulf of Martaban in Myanmar in 2013, it said.
It was expected to supply an initial 300 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) from M9, of which 240 mmcfd would be delivered to Thailand and the rest to Myanmar.
PTT subsidiary PTT Exploration and Production PTTE.BK owns 100 percent of Blocks M9 and M11, located about 300 km (185 miles) south of Myanmar’s biggest city, Yangon.
Myanmar natural gas accounts for about 30 percent of Thailand’s consumption, mostly in power generation. (Reporting by Khettiya Jittapong; Editing by Martin Petty)