Can LNG displace coal in Japan and South Korea?

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Report summary

Competition between coal and gas generation has not historically been a feature of Asian power markets. The wide differential between Asian coal and gas prices and the lack of flexibility in power markets has hindered large-scale fuel switching. The price differential has recently narrowed, and with looming gas oversupply likely to push Asian spot LNG prices down further, could the economic basis for coal-to-gas switching become a reality?

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    Can LNG displace coal in Japan and South Korea?

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Table of contents

  • Fuel taxes: South Korean taxes favour coal over gas
  • Carbon taxes: South Korea's emissions trading off to a tepid start
  • Power market: South Korean utilities compete on cost, while competition in Japan is limited
  • LNG procurement: Japanese companies self-procure, while most South Korean utilities rely on aggregator
  • Coal procurement: Japan utility procurement method more rigid than in South Korea
  • Conclusion

Tables and charts

This report includes 2 images and tables including:


  • Fuel taxes by type
  • Screening curves with a carbon price

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