*Global LNG trade surged to record levels in 2018.  The top five global importers alone, all in Asia, collectively took 220.4mn tons, up 13% on 2017’s previous record. Global number two China alone took a whopping 41% more on the back of 46% 2017 gains, pulling further ahead of number three South Korea in the process despite the latter taking 18% more. Number four India hiked buying by 20% to 22.4mn tons (see chart 1).

*Though final import data for Europe, the other key region of...