MOSCOW, October 20 (RIA Novosti) - A decrease in oil prices poses a threat for liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects and returns for Australian project developers, the chairman of consultancy firm Facts Global Energy said Monday.
Lower oil prices could put LNG projects "to sleep for a number of years," Fereidun Fesharaki was quoted as saying by Bloomberg.
"For the projects that are already under construction, it hits their pocketbooks seriously," the expert added.
According to Fesharaki, oil prices below $80 a barrel could be disastrous for certain projects. He also predicted global benchmark Brent crude would drop to $60 a barrel before the end of 2014 and that it would only return to $80 by late 2015.
Australia's exports of LNG are linked to the oil price that has experienced a decline after the peak in June, with Brent crude reaching an almost four-year low of $82.6 per barrel last week.
The Australian natural gas industry already faces high costs as foreign companies, such as British gas producer BG Group and US energy company Chevron, work on creating seven export ventures in order to meet Asia's demand.