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Market analysis

The Commission produces quarterly reports on EU gas and electricity markets.

Gas and electricity market reports

Energy prices have a significant impact on household expenditures, industrial costs and business competitiveness. In a liberalised market, monitoring market prices has become increasingly important for analysts, policy makers and businesses alike.

The EU quarterly gas and electricity market reports analyse market data in detail to examine trends and challenges. The reports explore the main factors behind price and volume variations and the interaction between market actors.

The European Union is currently facing a sharp spike in energy prices. In response, the Commission adopted a Communication on “Tackling rising energy prices: a toolbox for action and support” to enact and support appropriate measures to mitigate the impact of the current energy price rises and help Europe's people and businesses, while further strengthening resilience against future shocks. The implementation of the measures proposed in the toolbox will impact price developments in the EU.

Every 2 years, a report on energy prices and costs in Europe is published, taking stock of the recent trends for gas, electricity and oil prices, as well as other energy costs.

Gas market - recent developments

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At the beginning of the second quarter of 2022, after reaching historic peaks in March, daily spot gas prices fell back and remained relatively stable in April and May. In June, however, as Russia’s Gazprom announced the termination of gas supply to a number of European customers and it started to curb flows on Nord Stream 1, wholesale gas started to rise again. By the end of summer, gas prices rose to historic highs (316 €/MWh on 26 August).

Russian gas imports fell measurably through all transit routes; flows through the Belarus transit route dropped by a staggering 90% year-on-year; as of May flows fell practically to zero. Flows through Nord Stream were down by 12%, falling to zero by the end of summer. In January-August 2022, Russian pipeline gas imports in the EU fell by 43 billion cubic metres (bcm), and total gas imports from Russia, including liquefied natural gas (LNG), were down by 39 bcm. At the same time, non-Russian LNG imports were up by 28 bcm and pipeline imports other than from Russia rose by 17 bcm.

EU gas consumption fell steeply by 16% (-13.9 bcm) year-on-year, amounting to 71 bcm. Gas demand in electricity generation also fell, by 7% (-8.1 TWh). EU LNG imports were up by 49% year-on-year, amounting to 36 bcm, while overall EU gas imports were down by 3%. The EU spent an estimated €75 billion on gas imports in Q2 2022.

Gas storage injections were faster than in the same period of 2021, as on 30 June 2022 the average EU storage filling rate was 58%, up by 32 percentage points during Q2 2022. By the end of August, the EU filling rate reached 80% on average. Retail gas prices for industrial customers showed a significant increase, up by an estimated 126% year-on-year in Q2 2022, for consumers with median annual consumption.

EU quarterly gas market reports

Electricity market - recent developments

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The second quarter of 2022 was marked by the impact of the developments following Russia’s unprovoked invasion against Ukraine, high energy commodity prices (mainly gas, but also coal), reduced flows of pipeline gas and the uncertainty of the markets concerning European security of gas supply. The European Power Benchmark averaged 191 €/MWh in Q2 2022 – 181% higher than Q2 2021.

High energy commodity prices, especially gas (fuel often used in the power plants setting the marginal wholesale electricity price), continued to support elevated prices and volatility. The largest year-on-year price increases in EU countries were registered in France (+254%), Greece (238%), and Italy (+234%). Malta and Italy reported the highest quarterly average price (252 and 249 €/MWh, respectively), 211% and 234% higher than in Q2 2021.

In Q2 2022, the share of renewables managed to increase its share to 43%, outplaying fossil fuels (36%). Renewable generation improved its output by 2% (+5 TWh) year-on-year. This was the result of an increase of 24% in solar generation (+13 TWh), 10% of onshore wind (+7 TWh) and 11% of offshore wind (+1 TWh). Reduced output levels of nuclear and hydro generation allowed fossil fuel generation to increase by 6% (+12 TWh) year-on-year, despite high energy commodity prices.

High wholesale electricity prices have resulted in rising consumer bills for households, also impacting the industry sector. Moreover, government interventions in EU countries are helping to alleviate the bill for consumers. Retail electricity prices for industrial customers also increased, estimated at 32% higher year-on-year in Q2 2022 for mid-sized industrial consumers.

EU quarterly electricity market reports

Energy data centre

Consistent and accurate data is very important for a reliable analysis that can be used as the basis to develop energy policies or investment planning.

For data and analysis, the Directorate-General for Energy relies on the Market Observatory for Energy, which maintains and operates the Energy market observation system (EMOS), a database of information collected from a wide range of private and public entities.


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