In 2008, at the 11th International Energy Forum (IEF) Ministerial and at the Jeddah and London Energy Meetings, Ministers called for greater energy data transparency, including the extension of the JODI platform to cover natural gas. The following year, the JODI Partners launched the JODI-Gas exercise, collecting production, demand, trade and storage data.
In the years that followed, support for JODI-Gas was regularly voiced at meetings of the G8, G20, and other Ministerial bodies—including the 13th IEF in Kuwait, where Ministers reaffirmed their support for the launch of JODI-Gas.
Just two months later, the JODI Partners organised the Second Gas Data Transparency Conference in Doha, where they agreed to seek support in converting JODI-Gas from an exercise into a permanent initiative. In October 2012, it was official: JODI-Gas became a permanent initiative. By the following month, 52 countries were participating in JODI-Gas, representing around two thirds of global supply and demand.
In January 2013, a beta version of JODI-Gas was made available to all countries submitting gas data, to gather feedback and promote participation. Just three months later, the number of participating countries had risen to 69, representing around 80% of global supply and demand of gas.
In June 2013, the JODI Partners organised the 3rd Gas Data Transparency Conference in Indonesia, which convened representatives from national administrations and industry to discuss and define a checklist of final steps prior to the public launch of the initiative.
One of the agreed upon pre-conditions to the public launch was the completion of the JODI-Gas Manual, which was published in February 2014.
Another pre-condition to launch was the organisation of training workshops on JODI-Gas for statisticians from participating countries. The IEF and JODI Partners organised not one but two such workshops, in Kuala Lumpur and Baku.
A third pre-condition to launch was the inclusion of data from more producing and consuming countries. In April 2014 the Gas Exporting Countries Forum came on board as a JODI Partner, bringing the number of countries and economies participating in JODI-Gas to 77 countries--representing nearly 90% of the global natural gas supply and demand.
In May 2014, six years after Ministers made the call, the JODI-Gas World Database was opened to the public.
JODI-Gas is the result of years of hard work by hundreds of people around the globe who, by cooperating every single month, have endeavoured to enhance global natural gas data transparency for the benefit of all market actors.
JODI-Gas is a commendable achievement, but it remains a work in progress. It relies on an unwavering and sustained commitment to transparency: from Leaders and Ministers, as well as from national statisticians, and of course the JODI Partners themselves.