International liquefied natural gas (LNG) buyers could keep up the strong pace of new long-term contracts through the rest of the year as short-term volumes continue to grow more expensive, according to market analysts.

Since the beginning of the year, buyers have secured over 22 million metric tons/year (mmty) of LNG by signing new deals. Poten & Partners’ Jason Feer, global head of business intelligence, said most of those contracts have been for long-term offtake from U.S. projects at prices linked to Henry Hub.

Russia’s February invasion of Ukraine continues to disrupt global supplies and spike energy prices. Feer said the conflict has fueled new market dynamics that could create another “strong year” for long-term contracts, building on last year’s momentum