The United States is on track to have capacity to become the world's second largest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG) by the end of 2022, just behind Australia, said the International Energy Agency (IEA). Overall, global LNG export capacity would reach 650 billion cubic meters (bcm) a year by the end of 2022, compared to less than 452 bcm a year in 2016. Australia would have capacity to export 117.8 bcm a year of LNG, followed by the United States with 106.7 bcm, it said. Australia would stay top by adding 30 bcm a year of capacity by the end of 2022 to its existing capacity, but the United States, which has seen shale gas output surge, would add about 90 bcm a year to its capacity of about 14 bcm a year now. Current low LNG prices are already making it tougher for exporters, and competition is loosening the typically rigid contracts that have dominated the long-distance trade.