Natural Gas Price Europe

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Comparison of natural gas prices in Japan, United Kingdom, and United States, 2007-2011 Natural gas prices at the Henry Hub in US Dollars per MMBtu for the 2000-2010 decade. Price per million BTU of oil and natural gas in the US, 1998-2015 Natural gas prices, as with other commodity prices, are mainly driven by supply and demand fundamentals. However, natural gas prices may also be linked to the price of crude oil and/or petroleum products, especially in continental Europe.

[1][2] Natural gas prices in the US had historically followed oil prices, but in recent years have decoupled from oil and are now trending somewhat with coal prices.[3] The current surge in unconventional oil and gas in the U.S. has resulted in lower gas prices in the U.S. This has led to discussions in Asian oil-linked gas markets to import gas based on the Henry Hub index[4] (until very recently the most widely used reference for US natural gas prices).

[5] Depending on the marketplace, the price of natural gas is expressed in US dollars (or other currency) per 1 million British thermal units (MMBtu), thousand cubic feet (Mcf), or 1,000 cubic meters. Note that, for natural gas price comparisons, $ per MMBtu multiplied by 1.025 = $ per Mcf of pipeline-quality gas, which is what is delivered to consumers. For rough comparisons, one million Btu is approximately equal to a thousand cubic feet of natural gas.

[6] Pipeline-quality gas has a BTU value slightly higher than that of pure methane, which has 1,012 BTU per cubic foot. Natural gas as it comes out of the ground is most often predominantly methane, but may have a wide range of BTU values, from much lower (due to dilution by non-hydrocarbon gasses) to much higher (due to the presence of ethane, propane, and heavier compounds) than standard pipeline-quality gas.

[7] U.S. market mechanisms The natural gas market in the United States is split between the financial (futures) market, based on the NYMEX futures contract, and the physical market, the price paid for actual deliveries of natural gas and individual delivery points around the United States. Market mechanisms in Europe and other parts of the world are similar, but not as well developed or complex as in the United States.

Futures market The standardized NYMEX natural gas futures contract is for delivery of 10,000 mmBtu (10,000 million Btu) of energy (approximately 10,000,000 cubic feet (280,000 m3) of gas) at Henry Hub in Louisiana over a given delivery month consisting of a varying number of days. As a coarse approximation, 1000 ft3 of natural gas ≈ 1 MMBtu ≈ 1 GJ. Monthly contracts expire 3–5 days in advance of the first day of the delivery month, at which points traders may either settle their positions financially with other traders in the market (if they have not done so already) or choose to "go physical" and accept delivery of physical natural gas (which is actually quite rare in the financial market).

It should be noted that most financial transactions for natural gas actually take place off exchange in the over-the-counter ("OTC") markets using "look alike" contracts that match the general terms and characteristics of the NYMEX futures contract and settle against the final NYMEX contract value, but that are not subject to the regulations and market rules required on the actual exchange. It is also important to note that nearly all participants in the financial gas market, whether on or off exchange, participate solely as a financial exercise in order to profit from the net cash flows that occur when financial contracts are settled among counterparties at the expiration of a trading contract.

This practice allows for the hedging of financial exposure to transactions in the physical market by allowing physical suppliers and users of natural gas to net their gains in the financial market against the cost of their physical transactions that will occur later on. It also allows individuals and organizations with no need or exposure to large quantities of physical natural gas to participate in the natural gas market for the sole purpose of gaining from trading activities.

In 2015-Nov Henry Hub Natural Gas Spot price was - 2.09 за Million Btu ($77,133 per thousand cubic meters) [8] Physical market Generally speaking, physical prices at the beginning of any calendar month at any particular delivery location are based on the final settled forward financial price for a given delivery period, plus the settled "basis" value for that location (see below). Once a forward contract period has expired, gas is then traded daily in a "day ahead market" wherein prices for any particular day (or occasional 2-3 day period when weekends and holidays are involved) are determined on the preceding day by traders using localized supply and demand conditions, in particular weather forecasts, at a particular delivery location.

The average of all of the individual daily markets in a given month is then referred to as the "index" price for that month at that particular location, and it is not uncommon for the index price for a particular month to vary greatly from the settled futures price (plus basis) from a month earlier. Many market participants, especially those transacting in gas at the wellhead stage, then add or subtract a small amount to the nearest physical market price to arrive at their ultimate final transaction price.

Once a particular day's gas obligations are finalized in the day-ahead market, traders (or more commonly lower-level personnel in the organization known as, "schedulers") will work together with counterparties and pipeline representatives to "schedule" the flows of gas into ("injections") and out of ("withdrawals") individual pipelines and meters. Because, in general, injections must equal withdrawals (i.

e. the net volume injected and withdrawn on the pipeline should equal zero), pipeline scheduling and regulations are a major driver of trading activities, and quite often the financial penalties inflicted by pipelines onto shippers who violate their terms of service are well in excess of losses a trader may otherwise incur in the market correcting the problem. Basis market Because market conditions vary between Henry Hub and the roughly 40 or so physical trading locations around United States, financial traders also usually transact simultaneously in financial "basis" contracts intended to approximate these difference in geography and local market conditions.

The rules around these contracts - and the conditions under which they are traded - are nearly identical to those for the underlying gas futures contract. Derivatives and market instruments Because the U.S. natural gas market is so large and well developed and has many independent parts, it enables many market participants to transact under complex structures and to use market instruments that are not otherwise available in a simple commodity market where the only transactions available are to purchase or sell the underlying product.

For instance, options and other derivative transactions are very common, especially in the OTC market, as are "swap" transactions where participants exchange rights to future cash flows based on underlying index prices or delivery obligations or time periods. Participants use these tools to further hedge their financial exposure to the underlying price of natural gas. Natural gas demand The demand for natural gas is mainly driven by the following factors: Weather Demographics Economic growth Fuel competition Storage Exports Natural gas demand in North America for 2005[9] Sector 2005 (Bcf) US residential 4,838 US commercial 3,057 US industrial 6,608 US electric power 5,797 US other 1,650 Total US demand 21,950 US LNG exports 65 US exports to Mexico 305 Total US gas disposition 22,320 Canada residential 602 Canada commercial 442 Canada industrial/power 1,428 Total Canadian demand 2,472 Total N.

A. demand 24,421 Total N.A. disposition 24,791 Weather Weather conditions can signiciantly affect natural gas demand and supply. Cold temperatures in the winter increase the demand for space heating with natural gas in commercial and residential buildings. Natural gas demand usually peaks during the coldest months of the year (December–February) and is lowest during the "shoulder" months (May–June and September–October).

During the warmest summer months (July–August), demand increases again. Due to the shift in population in the United States toward the sun belt, summer demand for natural gas is rising faster than winter demand. Temperature effects are measured in terms of 'heating degree days' (HDD) during the winter, and 'cooling degree days'(CDD) during the summer. HDDs are calculated by subtracting the average temperature for a day from 65 degrees.

Thus, if the average temperature for a day is 50 degrees, there are 15 HDDs. If the average temperature is above 65 degrees, HDD is zero. Cooling degree days are also measured by the difference between the average temperature and 65 degrees. Thus, if the average temperature is 80 degrees, there are 15 CDDs. If the average temperature is below 65 degrees, CDD is zero. Hurricanes can affect both the supply of and demand for natural gas.

For example, as hurricanes approach the Gulf of Mexico, offshore natural gas platforms are shut down as workers evacuate, thereby shutting in production. In addition, hurricanes can also cause severe destruction to offshore (and onshore) production facilities. For example, Hurricane Katrina (2005) resulted in massive shut-ins of natural gas production. Hurricane damage can also reduce natural gas demand.

The destruction of power lines interrupting electricity produced by natural gas can result in significant reduction in demand for a given area (e.g., Florida). Demographics Changing demographics also affects the demand for natural gas, especially for core residential customers. In the US for instance, recent demographic trends indicate an increased population movement to the Southern and Western states.

These areas are generally characterized by warmer weather, thus we could expect a decrease in demand for heating in the winter, but an increase in demand for cooling in the summer. As electricity currently supplies most of the cooling energy requirements, and natural gas supplies most of the energy used for heating, population movement may decrease the demand for natural gas for these customers. However, as more power plants are fueled by natural gas, natural gas demand could in fact increase.

Economic growth The state of the economy can have a considerable effect on the demand for natural gas in the short term. This is particularly true for industrial and to a lesser extent the commercial customers. When the economy is booming, output from the industrial sectors generally increases. On the other hand, when the economy is experiencing a recession, output from industrial sectors drops. These fluctuations in industrial output accompanying the economy affects the amount of natural gas needed by these industrial users.

For instance, during the economic recession of 2001, U.S. natural gas consumption by the industrial sector fell by 6 percent.[10] Fuel competition Supply and demand dynamics in the marketplace determine the short term price for natural gas. However, this can work in reverse as well. The price of natural gas can, for certain consumers, affect its demand. This is particularly true for those consumers who have the ability to switch the fuel which they consume.

In general the core customers (residential and commercial) do not have this ability, however, a number of industrial and electric generation consumers have the capacity to switch between fuels. For instance, when natural gas prices are extremely high, electric generators may switch from using natural gas to using cheaper coal or fuel oil. This fuel switching then leads to a decrease for the demand of natural gas, which usually tends to drop its price.

Storage North American natural gas injections (positive) represent additional demand and compete with alternative uses such as gas for heating or for power generation. Natural gas storage levels significantly affect the commodity’s price. When the storage levels are low, a signal is being sent to the market indicating that there is a smaller supply cushion and prices will be rising. On the other hand, when storage levels are high, this sends a signal to the market that there is greater supply flexibility and prices will tend to drop.

Exports Exports are another source of demand. In North America, gas is exported within its forming countries, Canada, the US and Mexico as well as abroad to countries such as Japan. Data source[11] Natural gas supply The supply for natural gas is mainly driven by the following factors: Pipeline capacity Storage Gas drilling rates Natural phenomena Technical issues Imports Transportation Wholesale Rates Natural gas supply in North America for 2005[9] 2005 (Bcf) Total US production 18,243 Total Canada production 6,022 Total N.

A. production 24,265 US imports and supplementals 340 Total N.A. supply 24,605 Pipeline capacity The ability to transport natural gas from the well heads of the producing regions to the consuming regions affects the availability of supply in the marketplace. The interstate and intrastate pipeline infrastructure has limited capacity and can only transport so much natural gas at any one time. This has the effect of limiting the maximum amount of natural gas that can reach the market.

The current pipeline infrastructure is quite developed, with the EIA estimating that the daily delivery capacity of the grid is 119×109 cu ft (3.4×109 m3).[12] However, natural gas pipeline companies should continue to expand the pipeline infrastructure in order to meet growing future demand. The coming addition of the Canadian Pipeline looks to provide additional resources for the North American populace CommercialNG.

com [13][14] Storage As natural gas injections (positive) represent additional demand, withdrawals (negative) represent an additional source of supply which can be accessed quickly. The more storage banks like shale deposits used give more cushion for the natural gas markets. Gas drilling rates The amount of natural gas produced both from associated and non-associated sources can be controlled to some extent by the producers.

The drilling rates and gas prices form a feedback loop. When supply is low relative to demand, prices rise; this gives a market signal to the producer to increase the number of rigs drilling for natural gas. The increased supply will then lead to a decrease in the price. Natural phenomena Natural phenomena can significantly affect natural gas production and thus supply. Hurricanes, for example, can affect the offshore production and exploitation of natural gas.

This is because safety requirements may mandate the temporary shut down of offshore production platforms. Tornadoes can have a similar effect on onshore production facilities. Technical Issues Equipment malfunction, although not frequent, could temporarily disrupt the flow across a given pipeline at an important market center. This would ultimately decrease the supply available in that market. On the other hand, technical developments in engineering methods can lead to more abundant supply.

Imports U.S. Natural Gas Marketed Production (cubic feet) since 1900 US EIA Imports are a source of supply. In North America, gas is imported from several countries, Canada and the US as well as abroad in the form of LNG from countries such as Trinidad, Algeria and Nigeria. Trends in natural gas prices The chart shows a 75-year history of annual United States natural gas production and average wellhead prices from 1930 through 2005.

Prices paid by consumers were increased above those levels by processing and distribution costs. Production is shown in billions of cubic meters per year, and average wellhead pricing is shown in United States dollars per thousand cubic meters, adjusted to spring, 2006, by the U.S. Consumer Price Index.[15][16][17][18][19] Through the 1960s the U.S. was self-sufficient in natural gas and wasted large parts of its withdrawals by venting and flaring.

Gas flares were common sights in oilfields and at refineries. U.S. natural gas prices were relatively stable at around (2006 US) $30/Mcm in both the 1930s and the 1960s. Prices reached a low of around (2006 US) $17/Mcm in the late 1940s, when more than 20 percent of the natural gas being withdrawn from U.S. reserves was vented or flared. Beginning in 1954, the Federal Power Commission regulated the price of US natural gas transported across state lines.

The commission set the price of gas below the market rate, resulting in price distortions. The low prices encouraged consumption and discouraged production. By the 1970s, there were shortages of price-regulated interstate gas, while unregulated gas within the gas-producing states (intrastate gas) was plentiful, but more expensive. By 1975, nearly half the marketed gas in the US was sold to the intrastate market, resulting in shortages during 1976 and 1977 in the Midwest that caused factories and schools to close temporarily for lack of natural gas.

The federal government progressively deregulated the price of natural gas starting in 1978, and ending with complete federal price deregulation in 1993.[20] While supply interruptions have caused repeated spikes in pricing since 1990, longer range price trends respond to limitations in resources and their rates of development. As of 2006 the U.S. Interior Department estimated that the Outer Continental Shelf of the United States held more than 15 trillion cubic meters of recoverable natural gas, equivalent to about 25 years of domestic consumption at present rates.

[21][22] Total U.S. natural gas reserves were then estimated at 30 to 50 trillion cubic meters, or about 40 to 70 years consumption.[23] The new technologies of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling have increased these estimates of recoverable reserves to many hundreds of trillion cubic feet. Hydraulic fracturing has reduced the Henry Hub spot price of natural gas considerably since 2008. The increased shale gas production leads to a shift of supply away from the south to the northeast and midwest of the country.

A recent study found that, on average, natural gas prices have gone down by more than 30% in counties above shale deposits compared to the rest of the US, highlighting that natural gas markets have become less integrated due to pipeline capacity constraints.[24] Natural gas prices in Europe Prices of natural gas for end-consumers vary greatly throughout Europe.[25] One of the main objectives of the projected single EU energy market is a common pricing structure for gas products.

A recent study suggests that the expansion of shale gas production in the U.S. has caused prices to drop relative to other countries, especially Europe and Asia, leaving natural gas in the U.S. cheaper by a factor of three.[26] It is expected that the TTIP trade deal between the U.S. and Europe opens up access to cheap American natural gas, which allow Europe to diversify its supply base, but may threaten the Renewable Energy transition.

[27] Currently, Europe's main natural gas supplier is Russia[28]. Major pipelines pass through Ukraine and there have been several disputes on the supply and transition prices between Ukraine and Russia.[29] In September 2013, it was reported that multiple factors have conspired to cause Europe as a whole to decrease its use of natural gas and make more use of coal.[30] The report also contains updated price trends.

Natural gas prices in South America In South America, the second largest supplier of natural gas is Bolivia. The price which Bolivia is paid for its natural gas is roughly US$3.25 to Brazil and US$3.18 to Argentina.[31] Other sources state that Brazil pays between US$3.15/MMBtu and US$3.60/MMBtu (not including US$1.50/MMBtu in Petrobras extraction and transportation costs).[32] The price of gas in the US as a whole is between US$5.

85/MMBtu (21 May 2006), US$7.90/MMBtu (April 2006)[33] & US$6.46/MMBtu (June 2006).[34] Though several years ago the price of natural gas spiked at $14 in California[35] due to lack of pipeline capacity to and within California, and also due to power outages.[36] While according to Le Monde, Brazil and Argentina pay US$2 per thousand cubic feet,[35] which costs between $2.21 to $2.28 per mmBTU [37] in California according to Reuters.

See also Natural gas storage Liquified natural gas Natural-gas processing Energy economics Energy crisis Henry Hub References ^ Herald Tribune Natural gas price links to oil market frustrate regulators efforts to develop competition. ^ Roben Farzad. "High Oil Prices Cut the Cost of Natural Gas". Retrieved 15 May 2015. ^ Natural Gas Price Links ^

aspx?id=305#.UZD6pitARpE ^ DISAVINO Scott, KRISHNAN Barani, Henry Hub, king of U.S. natural gas trade, losing crown to Marcellus, Reuters, 25 September 2014 (Retrieved 21 October 2014) ^ EIA conversion chart "$ per MMBtu multiplied by 1.025 = $ per Mcf" ^ US Energy Information Administration, Natural gas processing plants in the United States: 2010 update, 17 June 2011. ^

htm ^ a b Natural Resources Canada-Canadian Natural Gas-Review of 2005 & Outlook to 2020 ^ Gas Demand ^ EAI-Natural Gas Consumption by End Use ^ Gas Supply ^ ^ Hill, Justin. "New York Times". Commercial Energy Consultant. Bloomberg, New York Times. Retrieved 1 January 2014. ^ Energy Information Administration (2005).

"Historical Natural Gas Annual" (PDF). U.S. Department of Energy. ^ Energy Information Administration (2005). "Natural Gas Annual 2004" (PDF). U.S. Department of Energy. ^ Energy Information Administration (Apr 2006). "Natural Gas Monthly". U.S. Department of Energy. ^ Bureau of Labor Statistics (2006). "Consumer Price Index". U.S. Department of Labor. National, All Urban Consumers, All Items, Averaged by Year.

^ This article uses numeric conventions of the United States: "billion" = 1 000 000 000 and "trillion" = 1 000 000 000 000. ^ Natural Gas.Org, History of regulation, 20 September 2013. ^ Minerals Management Service (2006). "Leasing Oil and Natural Gas Resources" (PDF). U.S. Department of the Interior. ^ Michael Janofsky (9 May 2006). "As Cuba Plans Offshore Wells, Some Want U.S. to Follow Suit". New York Times.

^ Overview of Natural Gas (2004). "U.S. Natural Gas Resource Estimates". (U.S.) Natural Gas Supply Association. ^ Fracking Growth - Impact of Shale Gas production on natural gas prices across the US, Fetzer, T. (2014) ^ "Europe's Energy Portal » Fuel, Natural Gas and Electricity Prices From Past to Present". Retrieved 15 May 2015. ^ Arezki, Rabah; Fetzer, Thiemo. "On the Comparative Advantage of U.

S. Manufacturing: Evidence from the Shale Gas Revolution" (PDF). Journal of International Economics. ^ "TTIP: what does the transatlantic trade deal mean for renewable energy?". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 June 2016. ^ "Supplier countries". European Union. Retrieved 15 September 2017. ^ "Ukraine country profile - Overview". BBC News. Retrieved 15 May 2015. ^ ^ Businessweek ^ Luiz Rodolfo Landim Machado (October 2002).

"Facing Market Risks in Brazil: the experience of the Bolivia - Brazil Gas Pipeline" (PDF). In IEA – OLADE Latin American Conference on Cross-Border Gas Trade. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 May 2006. Retrieved 2 May 2006. ^ "Futures & Options Trading". Retrieved 15 May 2015. ^ Globe and Mail ^ a b "Evo Morales et l'arme du gaz" (in French). Le Monde. 25 January 2006. Retrieved 25 January 2006.

^ US DOE, ^ "Weekday demand lifts US Henry Hub gas from 31-mo low". Reuters. Retrieved 15 May 2015. External links v t e Petroleum industry Petroleum Primary energy Benchmarks Argus Sour Bonny Light Brent Dubai Indian Basket Indonesian Isthmus-34 Light Japan Cocktail OPEC Reference Basket Tapis Urals West Texas Intermediate Western Canadian Select Data Natural gas Consumption Production Reserves Imports Exports Price Petroleum Consumption Production Reserves Imports Exports Price (of gasoline and diesel) Exploration Core sampling Geophysics Integrated asset modelling Petroleum engineering Reservoir simulation Seismic to simulation Petroleum geology Petrophysics Reflection seismology (Seismic inversion) Seismic source Drilling Blowout Completion (Squeeze job) Differential sticking Directional drilling (Geosteering) Drilling engineering Drilling fluid (invasion) Drill stem test Lost circulation Measurement Tracers Underbalanced drilling Well logging Production Petroleum fiscal regime Concessions Production sharing agreements Artificial lift Pumpjack Submersible pump (ESP) Gas lift Downstream Enhanced oil recovery (EOR) Steam injection Gas reinjection Midstream Petroleum product Pipeline transport Refining Upstream Water injection Well intervention XT History 1967 Oil Embargo 1973 oil crisis 1979 energy crisis 1980s oil glut 1990 oil price shock 2000s energy crisis 2010s oil glut Founders History of the petroleum industry Nationalization OPEC GECF Seven Sisters Standard Oil Oil market timelines Provinces and fields List of natural gas fields List of oil fields East Midlands Oil Province East Texas Gulf of Mexico Niger Delta North Sea Permian Basin Persian Gulf Prudhoe Bay Oil Field Russia Venezuela Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin Other topics Acronyms Oil shale gas Peak oil mitigation timing People Petrocurrency Petrodollar recycling Shale band Shale gas Swing producer Unconventional oil heavy crude oil sands oil shale Companies and organisations Major petroleum companies Supermajors BP Chevron Eni ExxonMobil Royal Dutch Shell Total National oil companies ADNOC (UAE) CNOOC (China) CNPC (China) Ecopetrol (Colombia) Gazprom (Russia) Iraq National Oil Company Indian Oil Corporation KazMunayGas (Kazakhstan) Kuwait Petroleum Corporation Lotos (Poland) Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation NIOC (Iran) NISOC (Iran) OGDCL (Pakistan) ONGC (India) PDVSA (Venezuela) PKN Orlen (Poland) Pemex (Mexico) Pertamina (Indonesia) PetroBangla (Bangladesh) Petrobras (Brazil) PetroChina Petronas (Malaysia) Petrovietnam PTT (Thailand) Qatar Petroleum Rosneft (Russia) Saudi Aramco (Saudi Arabia) Sinopec (China) SOCAR (Azerbaijan) Sonangol (Angola) Sonatrach (Algeria) Statoil (Norway) TPAO (Turkey) YPF (Argentina) Energy trading Glencore Gunvor Mercuria Naftiran Intertrade Trafigura Vitol Other Anadarko Apache BG Group Cenovus Energy Compañía Española de Petróleos ConocoPhillips Devon Galp Energia Hess Husky Energy Imperial Oil Lukoil Marathon Oil Nippon Oil Occidental OMV Port Harcourt Refining Company Reliance Industries Repsol Suncor Energy Surgutneftegas TNK-BP Tullow Oil Tüpraş Major services companies Amec Foster Wheeler Baker Hughes Cameron CGG CH2M Hill Chicago Bridge & Iron Company China Oilfield Services Enbridge Ensco GE Oil & Gas Halliburton Nabors Industries Naftiran Intertrade National Oilwell Varco Petrofac Saipem Schlumberger Snam Subsea 7 TransCanada Transocean Weatherford Wood Group Other International Association of Oil & Gas Producers International Energy Agency International Petroleum Exchange OPEC Society of Petroleum Engineers World Petroleum Council Category  Commons Retrieved from "https://en."

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Data extracted in November 2017. Most recent data: Further Eurostat information, Main tables and Database. Planned update: May 2018. Figure 1: Natural gas prices for household consumers, first half 2017(EUR per kWh)Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202) Figure 2: Natural gas — share of taxes and levies paid by household consumers, first half 2017(%)Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202) Figure 3: Development of natural gas prices for household consumers, EU-28 and EA, 2008-2017(EUR per kWh)Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202) Figure 4: Change in natural gas prices for household consumers compared with 12 months earlier, first half 2017(%)Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202) Figure 5: Natural gas prices for non-household consumers, first half 2017(EUR per kWh)Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_203) Figure 6: Natural gas — share of non-recoverable taxes and levies paid by non-household consumers, first half 2017(%)Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_203) Figure 7: Development of natural gas prices for non-household consumers, EU-28 and EA, 2008-2017(EUR per kWh)Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_203) Figure 8: Change in natural gas prices for non-household consumers compared with 12 months earlier, first half 2017(%)Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_203) This article highlights the development of natural gas prices for household and non-household consumers within the European Union (EU); it also includes price data from Liechtenstein, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia, Turkey, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Moldova and Ukraine.

The price of energy in the EU depends on a range of different supply and demand conditions, including the geopolitical situation, the national energy mix, import diversification, network costs, environmental protection costs, severe weather conditions, or levels of excise and taxation. Note that prices presented in this article include taxes, levies and VAT for household consumers but exclude refundable taxes and levies and VAT for non-household consumers.

Main statistical findings An overview of average prices in euro per kilowatt-hour (EUR per kWh) for natural gas over the last three years (first half of each year) is presented in Table 1. Natural gas prices for household consumers For household consumers (defined for the purpose of this article as medium-sized consumers with an annual consumption within the range of 20 Gigajoules (GJ) < consumption < 200 GJ), natural gas prices during the first half of 2017 were highest among the EU Member States in Sweden, Denmark and Portugal (see Figure 1).

The lowest natural gas prices were in Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary. The price of natural gas for households in Sweden (EUR 0.121 per kWh) was nearly four times the price that was charged in Romania (EUR 0.032 per kWh). The average price in the EU-28 — a weighted average using the most recent (2015) data for the quantity of consumption by households — was EUR 0.058 per kWh. The proportion of taxes and levies in the overall natural gas retail price for household consumers is shown in Figure 2.

The relative amount of tax contribution in the first half of 2017 was smallest in the United Kingdom (6.8 %) where a low VAT rate was applied to the basic price. The highest taxes were charged in Denmark where 55.4 % of the final price was made up of taxes and levies, with this share also exceeding half in the Netherlands (53.3 %). The development of natural gas prices for household consumers in the EU-28 since the first half of 2008 is presented in Figure 3.

Generally, these prices increased between the first and second half of each year and then fell back between the second half of one year and the first half of the next, the only exception being the fall recorded between the first and second halves of 2009. Overall there was an upward trend to natural gas prices in the EU-28 from a low of EUR 0.052 per kWh in the first half of 2010 to a peak of EUR 0.

072 per kWh in the second half of 2014. More recently, the fall between the first half of 2016 and the first half of 2017 was 6.3%. Figure 4 shows the change in natural gas prices for household consumers including all taxes, levies and VAT in national currency between the first half of 2016 and the first half of 2017; these prices fell during the period under consideration in 20 of the 25 EU Member States for which data are available — Cyprus, Malta and Finland do not report these prices.

In Croatia and Portugal, the gas price fell by as much as 21, respectively 18 %,. There were only five Member States where natural gas prices for household consumers rose between the first half of 2016 and the first half of 2017 with biggest increases in Estonia (21%), Denmark (13%) and Sweden (11%). Natural gas prices for non-household consumers For non-household consumers (defined for the purpose of this article as medium-size consumers with an annual consumption within the range of 10 000 GJ < consumption < 100 000 GJ), natural gas prices during the first half of 2017 were highest among the EU Member States in Finland (EUR 0.

046 per kWh), Sweden (EUR 0.041 per kWh) and in the Netherlands (EUR 0.037 per kWh); they were lowest in Bulgaria (EUR 0.022 per kWh) — see Figure 5. The EU-28 average price — a weighted average using the most recent (2015) national data for the quantity of consumption by non-household consumers — was EUR 0.030 per kWh. The proportion of taxes and levies that cannot be recovered by non-household consumers in the overall natural gas price is presented in Figure 6.

For non-household consumers, the relative amount of tax contribution in the first half of 2017 was lowest in Luxembourg (1.2%). The highest shares of taxes were registered in the Netherlands (42%), Finland (36%) and Romania (33%). The development of natural gas prices for non-household consumers in the EU-28 since the first half of 2008 is shown in Figure 7: these prices did not display the same intra-annual developments observed for household consumers (see Figure 3).

After falling to a low of EUR 0.030 per kWh in the second half of 2009, gas prices for non-household consumers increased each half year to peak at EUR 0.041 per kWh in the first half of 2013, before returning to the same low point (EUR 0.030 per kWh) in from the second half of 2016 onwards as prices fell for eight successive half year periods. Figure 8 shows the change in natural gas prices for non-household consumers including all non-recoverable taxes and levies in national currency terms between the first half of 2016 and the first half of 2017.

These prices fell during this period in 19 out of the 26 EU Member States for which data are available — Cyprus and Malta do not report natural gas prices for non-household consumers. The biggest price reductions were observed in Croatia (26%) and Hungary (19%). By contrast natural gas prices for the non-household sector rose significantly in Sweden and in Estonia (both by 14%), Denmark (13%) and in Finland (12%) .

Data sources and availability Defining household consumers Throughout this article, references to household consumers relate to the medium standard household consumption band with an annual consumption of natural gas (only piped gas is considered) between 5 600 kWh and 56 000 kWh (20 Gigajoule (GJ) and 200 GJ). All figures are consumer retail prices and include taxes, levies and VAT. Finland, Cyprus and Malta do not report natural gas prices for household consumers.

Note that the comparison between the 2016 and 2017 prices are made with prices in national currencies in order to exclude the influence of changes in exchange rates between national currencies and the euro for those EU Member States and non-member countries that do not use the euro. Defining non-household consumers Throughout this article, references to non-household consumers relate to the medium standard non-household consumption band with an annual consumption of natural gas between 2 778 and 27 778 GWh (10 000 and 100 000 GJ).

Prices are presented corresponding to the basic price for natural gas, including all non-recoverable taxes and levies. Cyprus and Malta do not report natural gas prices for non-household consumers. Quantities of natural gas that are used for chemical processes or electricity and/or combined heat and power production are excluded from these data. Methodology Due to a change in methodology from 2007 onwards, there is a break in series and hence only a relatively short time series is available.

Nevertheless, even in this relatively short timeframe, gas prices have fluctuated considerably. In 2016, Regulation (EU) 2016/1952 entered into force that defines the obligation for the collection and dissemination of natural gas prices for household and non-household consumers. Until January 2017, price data for the household sector was provided by the reporting authorities on a voluntary basis. Until 2016, the domain of non-household consumers was defined as industrial consumers, but reporting authorities were allowed to include other non-household consumers.

With the introduction of Regulation (EU) 2016/1952, the definition was changed from industrial to non-household consumers in order to have a unique methodology for all reporting countries. Gas tariffs or price schemes vary from one supplier to another. They may result from negotiated contracts, especially for large non-household consumers. For smaller consumers, they are generally set according to the amount of gas consumed along with a number of other characteristics; most tariffs also include some form of fixed charge.

There is, therefore, no single price for natural gas. In order to compare prices over time and between EU Member States, this article shows information for consumption bands for household consumers and for non-household consumers. There are in total three different types of households for which natural gas prices are collected following different annual consumption bands. Across non-household consumers, natural gas prices are collected for a total of six different types of users.

The prices collected cover average prices over a period of six months (a half year or semester) from January to June (first half or semester 1) and from July to December (second half or semester 2) of each year. Prices include the basic price of the natural gas, transmission and distribution charges, meter rental, and other services. Natural gas prices for household consumers are presented including taxes, levies, non-tax levies, fees and value added tax (VAT) as this generally reflects the end price paid by household consumers.

As non-household consumers are usually able to recover VAT and some other taxes, prices for enterprises are shown without VAT and other recoverable taxes/levies/fees. The unit for natural gas prices is that of euro per kilowatt hour (EUR per kWh). Context The price and reliability of energy supplies, are key elements in a country’s energy supply strategy. Gas prices are of particular importance for international competitiveness, as gas might represent a significant proportion of total energy costs for industrial and service-providing businesses.

In contrast to the price of other fossil fuels, which are usually traded on global markets with relatively uniform prices, there is a wider range of prices within the EU Member States for natural gas. These issues were touched upon in a Communication from the European Commission Facing the challenge of higher oil prices (COM(2008) 384), which called on the EU to become more efficient in its use of energy, and less dependent on fossil fuels — in particular, by following the approach laid out in the climate change and renewable energy package.

The EU has acted to liberalise electricity and gas markets since the second half of the 1990s. Directives adopted in 2003 established common rules for internal markets for electricity and natural gas. Deadlines were set for opening markets and allowing customers to choose their supplier: as of 1 July 2004 for business customers and as of 1 July 2007 for all consumers (including households). Some EU Member States anticipated the liberalisation process, while others were much slower in adopting the necessary measures.

Indeed, significant barriers to entry remain in many electricity and natural gas markets as seen through the number of markets that are still dominated by (near) monopoly suppliers. In July 2009, the European Parliament and Council adopted a third package of legislative proposals aimed at ensuring a real and effective choice of suppliers, as well as benefits for customers. It is thought that increased transparency for gas and electricity prices should help promote fair competition, by encouraging consumers to choose between different energy sources (oil, coal, natural gas and renewable energy sources) and different suppliers.

Energy price transparency can be made more effective by publishing and broadcasting as widely as possible prices and pricing systems. See also Further Eurostat information Main tables Energy Statistics - prices (t_nrg_price) Gas prices by type of user (ten00118) Database Energy Statistics - prices of natural gas and electricity (nrg_price) Energy Statistics - natural gas and electricity prices (from 2007 onwards) (nrg_pc) Energy Statistics - natural gas and electricity prices (until 2007) (nrg_pc_h) Dedicated section Methodology / Metadata Source data for tables and figures (MS Excel) External links

Hazel Gordon

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