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Energy

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, policymakers 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.

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

EU gas consumption continued to decline and was below the consumption range of the last seven years. Total gas consumption was 56 billion cubic metres (bcm) from July-September 2023 – that’s 14% lower than in the previous quarter and 7% lower than the same period in 2022.

EU domestic gas production also continued its declining trend. Total production was 9 bcm, 5% down from the previous quarter and 18% less than in the same quarter of the previous year.

EU gas storage reached a record level of 96% at the end of September 2023. The average filling rate of the quarter was 88% (1003 TWh, 103 bcm), 35% higher than in the previous quarter and 17% higher than in the same period of the previous year. Storage filling rates at the end of the quarter were over 90% in all EU countries and at record high levels compared to the previous years.

EU gas imports decreased by 13% quarter-on-quarter and by 17 % year-on-year. Total gas imports amounted to 68 bcm, compared to 78 bcm in the second quarter of 2023 and 82 bcm in the third quarter of 2022.

EU pipeline imports decreased by 6% quarter-on-quarter and by 19% year-on-year resulting from reduced pipeline flows from Norway amidst continued maintenance works on several production sites and less supply from the UK. Pipeline imports from Russia were slightly higher compared to the previous quarter, but clearly down on 2022 figures , while imports from Azerbaijan and North Africa remained stable.

Total EU LNG imports decreased by 17% compared to the previous quarter and by 6% year-on-year. The United States remained the EU’s biggest LNG supplier and further increased its share to 47% from 45% in the previous quarter, followed by Qatar (14%) and Russia (13%).The EU's biggest LNG importer remained France (21%), followed by Spain (18%), and The Netherlands (18%). The EU remained the largest LNG importer in the world with 24% share in global LNG imports, ahead of China (18%) and Japan (17%).

Imports of Russian gas from July to September 2023 amounted to 11 bcm, which represents just 16% of the EU’s total gas imports – and is 18% down on the same period in 2022 and 70% lower than the same quarter of the pre-crisis year of 2021.

European wholesale gas prices displayed high volatility. The downward trend of prices stopped, and prices fluctuated between 30 €/MWh and 40 €/MWh. The quarterly average spot price was 33 €/MWh, 5% lower than in the previous quarter, and 83% lower than in Q3 2022. European gas prices were on average 7% lower than Asian prices in the third quarter. In a year-on-year comparison, prices declined in all major global gas price benchmarks by between 83% and 67% the biggest drop being registered in Europe and the smallest in the US.

The average monthly gas retail price for household consumers continued to decline in the third quarter of 2023 although at slower pace than in the previous quarter. The quarterly average retail gas price was 6% lower than in the previous quarter and 30% lower year-on-year. Compared to the third quarter of the pre-crisis year (2021), retail prices were 43% higher and 61% higher compared to historic prices (2021’s first half).

EU quarterly gas market reports

The older reports (2008-2020) are available in a dedicated CIRCA BC

Electricity market - recent developments

The lowest quarterly average prices during Q3 2023 were recorded in Sweden and Finland, at 29 €/MWh and 44 €/MWh, respectively. Conversely, the highest prices during the quarter were recorded in Malta and Italy (116 and 113 €/MWh), but sill they were 75% and 76% lower than in third quarter of the previous year.

The share of electricity generated by renewables increased for the third consecutive quarter to 46% in the third quarter 2023 (from 37% in the third quarter of the previous year), while the share of fossil fuels-fired electricity fell to 32% (from 41% in the third quarter of the previous year). Solar generation surged by 23% (+13 TWh) and onshore wind output rose by 21% (+13 TWh). Hydropower recovered by 12% (+8 TWh), while offshore wind generation increased by 14% (+1 TWh). Overall, wind and solar generation together (155 TWh) registered an increase of +21% (+27 TWh) compared with the same quarter of the previous year.

Coal-fired generation fell by 39% (-41 TWh), whereas less CO2-intensive gas generation dropped by 17% (-19 TWh). Overall, fossil fuel generation fell by 23% (-55 TWh) in the third quarter of 2023, supported by lower demand and sustained renewables generation. Nuclear generation recovered in the third quarter of 2023 rising by 7% (+10 TWh) when compared with the quarter of the previous year.

The EU’s electricity consumption in the third quarter in 2023 fell by4% for another quarter compared with last year’s levels. Electricity consumption in the third quarter of 2023 was lower than the same quarterly figure in 2020, which was historically low due to the impact of COVID.

EU quarterly electricity market reports

The older reports (2008-2020) are available in a dedicated CIRCA BC.

Energy data centre

Consistent and accurate data is very important for a reliable analysis that can be used 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.

Documents

1 MARCA 2018
Final report - Study on the quality of electricity market data of transmission system operators, electricity supply disruptions, and their impact on the European electricity markets
1 GRUDNIA 2017
Annex 1 - Study on the quality of electricity market data of transmission system operators, electricity supply disruptions, and their impact on the European electricity markets
1 GRUDNIA 2017
Annex 2 - Study on the quality of electricity market data of transmission system operators, electricity supply disruptions, and their impact on the European electricity markets
1 PAŹDZIERNIKA 2014
Methodological description and interpretation of the volatility index for electricity markets