China has become the single most important buyer of LNG supplied under long-term agreements, increasingly becoming a crucial intermediary in trading cargoes of liquefied natural gas.  

Despite China’s reopening, the country’s LNG imports did not see any major uptick, in fact, its January imports are 15% down year-on-year, totaling 6.07 million tonnes according to Kpler. 

Roughly one-sixth of all term agreements that will begin delivering LNG through 2027 have been concluded with Chinese firms, with China overtaking Japan as the main term buyer.  

Attesting to the growing Chinese clout on LNG trade, Chinese firms are assumed to have resold at least 5.5 million tonnes of LNG last year, roughly 6% of the spot market, as sellers benefited from Europe’s runaway gas prices.