by Charles Lemos, Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 07:43:31 PM EST
"The time of cheap energy resources, and cheap gas is surely coming to an end." Vladimir V. Putin
This past Tuesday in Moscow and largely at the behest of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, fourteen large natural gas-producing countries met to establish an organization that will study ways to set global natural gas prices by limiting production, much as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries does for crude oil. For now, the organization is to be called the Forum of Gas Exporting Countries (FGEC. The forum members include: Algeria, Bolivia, Brunei, Venezuela, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Qatar, Libya, Malaysia, Nigeria, the United Arab Emirates, Russia, Trinidad and Tobago and, as observers, Equatorial Guinea and Norway.
Russia, the world's largest producer, accounts for 21.6% of global natural gas production. Other top ten global producers attending the meeting include Iran, Norway (as an observer) and Algeria. However, only eight of the 14 countries are world top 20 producers. As an aside, it's noteworthy that none of the large coming on stream Central Asian producers attended the meeting.