Electricity market indicators


Data extracted in June 2019.

Planned article update: June 2020.

Highlights


The market share of the largest generator in the electricity market in 2017 was 100 % in Cyprus and above 80 % in Estonia (83 %) and Croatia (86 %).

Cumulative market share of the main electricity generating companies and their respective installed capacity share, 2017 (in %)

This article takes a look at electricity markets in the European Union (EU), presenting recent statistical data on the number of electricity generating and retailing companies across EU Member States and Norway, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Turkey, Kosovo[1] and Moldova.

During the period 2003-2017, the number of main (main = market coverage above 5 % of national electricity generation) electricity generating companies in the European Union fluctuated between 82 and 90 companies, without a clear up- or downward trend.



Full article


Electricity markets - generation and installed capacity

The information in Table 1 refers to the number of companies that generate electricity representing at least 95 % of net electricity generation at national level.

In 2017, the number of electricity generating companies representing at least 95 % of national net electricity generation remained limited to five or fewer in four EU Member States. Germany did not report a number for this indicator.

Between 2016 and 2017, the number of electricity generating companies representing at least 95 % of national net electricity generation remained stable in nine EU Member States and increases could be observed in 11 Member States, while the number went down most significantly in Italy.

Table 1: Number of generating companies representing at least 95% of national generation 2003-2017

Table 2 displays the number of main companies that have a market coverage for at least 5 % of the total national net electricity generation.

Table 2: Number of main electricity generating companies, 2003-2017

Six EU Member States declared only one single enterprise to have a significant share of electricity generation at national level in 2017. This is one more country compared to 2016. In Portugal, Germany and Bulgaria there are five electricity generating companies of considerable importance.

The number of main enterprises at EU-28 level fluctuated between 82 and 90 companies between 2003 and 2017.

Figure 1 displays the cumulated shares of companies in a given country having a share of at least 5 % of their respective national markets, both with regard to the electricity actually generated in 2017 and the installed capacity of the generating power plants.

Figure 1: Cumulative market share of the main electricity generating companies and their respective installed capacity share, 2017 (in %)

Table 3 displays the market share of the largest generator in the electricity market in 2017 in percentage of national production. Cyprus reports a monopoly situation where one single company is responsible for the totality of electricity generation, and thus the installed capacity. Apart from Cyprus, where only one electricity company dominates the national production, figures above 80 % for the largest electricity generators are observed in Estonia (83 %) and Croatia (86 %).

A size of the largest generation company on national level below 20 % can be observed in Italy (19 %), in Luxembourg (18 %), in Poland (18 %) and in Lithuania (14 %). The market share of the largest generator for Bulgaria, Austria, United Kingdom and the Netherlands were not reported.

Table 3: Market share of the largest generator in the electricity market, 2003-2017 (%).png
Source: Eurostat (nrg_ind_331a)

Member States also provided information on new installed electricity generation capacity during 2017. From Table 4, it can be concluded that the new installed capacity decreased compared with 2016 from 27.8 to 25.7 Gigawatt. This decrease is mainly due to significant changes (in absolute terms) in the United Kingdom, Portugal, the Netherlands and Sweden.

Table 4: New capacity connected during the year, 2007-2017 (in MW)

Electricity markets - retail

EU Member States (and Norway, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Turkey, Kosovo and Moldova) also reported information concerning the retailing (sales) sector.

Table 5 presents information on the total number of retailers that sell electricity to final customers. When looking at the number of main retailers (retailers are considered as "main" if they sell at least 5 % of the total national electricity consumption), 2017 shows a big increase. It went from 102 retailers in 2016 to 112 in 2017.

Table 5: Total number of electricity retailers to final consumers, 2003-2017


Table 6: Number of main electricity retailers, 2003-2017

Eight main companies can be found in Slovenia, seven in Sweden and in the United Kingdom. Markets where only one main company is dealing with the sales of electricity are registered in Greece, Cyprus, and Malta. (See table 6). Germany did not report the number of main retailers they have.

Figure 2 illustrates the number of main electricity retailers to final consumers and their cumulative market shares for all EU Member States plus Norway, Turkey, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, north Macedonia, Kosovo and Moldova.

If one looks to the remaining market, which is the market that is covered by non-main retail companies that have a market coverage of less than 5 %, this market for "minor" retail companies is the largest in Sweden (46 %) and in Italy (57 %). The market for "minor" retail companies is below 20 % in 11 out of the 26 EU countries that reported this indicator.

Figure 2: Number of main electricity retailers and their cumulative market share, 2017

Source data for tables and graphs

Data sources

The information used to create this article was collected on the basis of a questionnaire "Competition Indicators for the electricity market 2017".

All 28 EU Member States plus Norway, North Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey, Kosovo and Moldova returned the questionnaires to Eurostat but sometimes information for individual indicators was not available or confidential. Ukraine returned an empty questionnaire.

The reporting was done on a voluntary basis.

Context

Since July 2004, small business consumers in the EU have been free to switch their electricity supplier, and in July 2007 this right was extended to all consumers. Independent national regulatory authorities have been established across the Member States to ensure that suppliers and network companies operate correctly. However, a number of shortcomings were identified in the opening-up of markets, and it was therefore decided to embark upon a third legislative package of measures with the aim of ensuring that all users could take advantage of the benefits provided by a truly competitive energy market. The European Commission launched its third legislative package to liberalise energy markets in September 2007. These proposals were designed to: create a competitive energy market; expand consumer choice; promote fairer prices; result in cleaner energy; and promote the security of supply. During 2009, a number of these proposals were adopted by the European Parliament and the Council.

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Database

Energy statistics - market structure indicators - natural gas and electricity (nrg_market)
Market share of the largest generator in the electricity market - annual data (nrg_ind_331a)
Energy Statistics - quantities (nrg_quant)
Energy Statistics - quantities, annual data (nrg_quanta)
Supply, transformation and consumption - commodity balances (nrg_cb)
Supply, transformation and consumption of electricity (nrg_cb_e)
Energy Statistics - quantities, monthly data (nrg_quantm)
Energy statistics - supply, transformation, consumption (nrg_10m)
Supply of electricity - monthly data (nrg_105m)
Energy statistics - prices of natural gas and electricity (nrg_price)
Energy statistics - natural gas and electricity prices (from 2007 onwards) (nrg_pc)
Electricity prices for household consumers - bi-annual data (from 2007 onwards) (nrg_pc_204)
Electricity prices for non-household consumers - bi-annual data (from 2007 onwards) (nrg_pc_205)
Electricity prices components for household consumers - annual data (from 2007 onwards) (nrg_pc_204_c)
Electricity prices components for non-household consumers - annual data (from 2007 onwards) (nrg_pc_205_c)

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Methodology

Notes

  1. This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence.