Challenges faced in producing shale gas have prompted analysts to revise down forecasted gas production levels for China, meaning it could still be dependent on imports despite expectations to more than double gas production by 2040.

“While we are positive on conventional and tight gas output, the long-term growth of CBM [coalbed methane] and shale production looks to be challenging,” Xueke Wang, a consultant for Wood Mackenzie, said in a statement.

At fault for shale are inferior reservoir properties in the Ordos Basin and little shale gas exploration efforts in the Tarim Basin, the firm said this week, noting “desert environment and limited infrastructure add to the list of challenges” for the latter.

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