Global gas exporting countries by type 2018

Russia is the world’s leading exporter of gas, exporting 223 billion cubic meters of pipeline gas in 2018 and 24.9 billion cubic meters of liquefied natural gas (LNG). Qatar is the second-largest natural gas exporter globally, followed by Norway and the United States.

Pipeline versus LNG exports

Among other top countries for natural gas exports, Canada and the Netherlands are atypical for using exclusively pipeline exports. In the Netherlands’ case, this is due in large part to a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing (fracking), one of the methods used to extract natural gas. While Canada has not banned fracking, pipelines are used to transfer gas to the United States, Canada’s major trading partner. LNGs are mostly used in overseas exports, in large part to Japan, China, and South Korea.

Natural gas in North America

In the past decade, gas exports from the United States to Canada have increased dramatically, corresponding with the rise in U.S. shale gas production following the 2008 Recession. The United States is already the largest producer of natural gas in the world, and shale gas production alone is expected to double between 2015 and 2040.

World's leading gas exporting countries in 2018

Pipeline exportsLNG exports
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Release date

June 2019



Survey time period


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