07/15/2015 13:34 EDT | Updated 07/15/2016 01:12 EDT

Canada needs LNG export options to avoid decline in natural gas production: CAPP

CALGARY — Canada's natural gas production will decline by about 10 per cent from current levels unless new export routes to Asia are opened, according to a report from the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers.

The oil and gas industry's leading association says Canada needs options for exporting a liquefied form of natural gas by ship if the country is to avoid a decline in production over the coming years.

The report finds that abundant U.S. natural gas supplies are pushing out Canadian gas in the traditional markets of Central Canada, the U.S. Midwest and U.S. Northeast, heightening the need for new markets.

CAPP's latest outlook estimates natural gas production would decline by about 1.5 billion cubic feet per day over the next decade to a low of 13 billion cubic feet per day, and then remain flat until the end of the report's forecast period in 2030.

If LNG export routes open up, however, CAPP says Canadian production could recover to current levels of 14.5 billion cubic feet per day by the end of the decade and then continue to climb to 17 billion cubic feet per day by 2030.

CAPP president Tim McMillan said Canada's proposed LNG projects need timely political and regulatory decisions to compete in a fiercely competitive global LNG market.

The Canadian Press