Statistics Explained

Natural gas price statistics


Data extracted in October 2022.

Planned article update: April 2023.

Highlights


Year-on-year household gas prices in the first half of 2022 increased in all of the 24 EU Member States that reported those prices, except Hungary.

Year-on-year non-household gas prices in the first half of 2022 increased in all 25 EU Member States that reported those prices. The increase ranged from 67% to 271%.

Household gas prices in the EU were highest in Sweden (€0.2216 per kWh) and lowest in Hungary (€0.0291 per kWh) in the first half of 2022.

Non-household gas prices in the EU without VAT and other recoverable taxes were highest in Sweden (€0.1429 per kWh) and lowest in Belgium (€0.0499 per kWh) in the first half of 2022.

[[File:Natural gas price statistics November 2022 - dynamic chart.xlsx]]

Natural gas prices (including taxes) for household consumers, first half 2022

This article highlights the development of natural gas prices for household and non-household consumers within the European Union (EU); it also includes prices data from Liechtenstein, North Macedonia, Serbia, Türkiye, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Moldova, Georgia and Ukraine, when available.

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, and 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.


Full article


Natural gas prices for household consumers

Highest gas prices in Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands

For household consumers in the EU (defined for the purpose of this article as medium-sized consumers with an annual consumption between 20 Gigajoules (GJ) and 200 GJ), natural gas prices in the first half of 2022 were highest in Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands, and lowest in Hungary, Croatia and Latvia (see Figure 1). The price of natural gas for households in Sweden (€0.2216 per kWh) was more than seven times the price charged in Hungary (€0.0.0291 per kWh) and 157 % higher than the EU average price.


Vertical stacked bar chart on the natural gas prices for household consumers in the second half 2021 in the EU, euro area, EU Member States and some of the EFTA countries, candidate countries, potential candidates and other countries. Each bar shows the three components of the price, which are the price without taxes, the VAT, and other taxes.
Figure 1: Natural gas prices for household consumers, first half 2022
(€ per kWh)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202)

The average price in the EU — a weighted average using the most recent (first half 2022) data for natural gas consumption by household consumers — was €0.0861 per kWh.

Figure 2 presents the development of natural gas prices for household consumers in the EU since the first half of 2008. Generally, these prices are higher in the second half of each year. This is due to the seasonal effect and reflected in the zig-zag shape of the curves in Figure 2. Overall in the EU, there was an upward trend in natural gas total prices in the first half of each year, from a low of €0.0562 per kWh in the first half of 2010 to a peak of €0.0692 per kWh in the first half of 2013. Then the price decreased until 2017, started increasing again in 2018, before dropping once again in 2020. In the first semester of 2022, the price of natural gas for household consumers increased substantially to €0.0861 per kWh, from €0.0638 per kWh of the year before, reaching an all-time high since this data collection started. The weight of the taxes increased from 25 % in the first half of 2008 to 35 % in the first half of 2021. In the first half of 2022, the weight of the taxes was 27 %.

Line chart with four lines showing the development of natural gas prices for household consumers in the EU from the first half of 2008 to the first half of 2022. The lines show the following four different prices: prices including taxes, prices excluding taxes, the prices of the first half of 2008 including taxes adjusted for inflation, and the prices of the first half of 2008 excluding taxes adjusted for inflation.
Figure 2: Development of natural gas prices for household consumers, EU, 2008-2022
(€ per kWh)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202)

Weight of taxes and levies differs greatly between Member States

Figure 3 shows the proportion of taxes and levies in the overall natural gas retail price for household consumers. The relative tax contribution in the first half of 2022 was smallest in Bulgaria, where subsidies and allowances led to negative figures(-4.45 %). The highest taxes are observed in the Netherlands, where taxes and levies correspond to 52.98 % of the final price. In Sweden this percentage is 32.8 %. The VAT in the EU represents 13 % of the total price. The share of VAT in the total price ranges from almost zero (0.36 %) in Poland to 23.9 % in Denmark. Compared with the first half of 2021, the share of taxes substantially decreased by 8.6 %, from 35.5 % to 26.9 %. This decrease relates to the governmental allowances and subsidies to mitigate high-energy costs, but is also a consequence of the overall increase of the energy and supply component.

Vertical stacked bar chart on the share of taxes and levies paid by household consumers for natural gas in the first half 2022 in the EU, euro area, EU Member States and some of the EFTA countries, candidate countries, potential candidates and other countries. Each bar shows the share of VAT and the share of other taxes and levies.
Figure 3: Share of taxes and levies paid by household consumers for natural gas, first half 2022
(%)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202)

Higher increase in gas prices for household consumers in Estonia, Lithuania and Bulgaria

Figure 4 shows the change in natural gas prices for household consumers including all taxes, levies and VAT from the first half of 2021 to the first half of 2022. For comparison purposes the national currencies were used. These prices increased during the period under consideration in 23 of the 24 EU Member States for which data are available — Cyprus, Malta and Finland do not report natural gas prices in the household sector. The largest increases are observed in Estonia (154.3 %), Lithuania (110.4 %) and Bulgaria (107.6 %). The cost of energy was the main driver of the increases. There was only one Member State where natural gas prices for household consumers fell between the first half of 2021 and the first half of 2022, namely Hungary with only a marginal decrease (-0.5 %). Prices in Hungary are regulated.

Horizontal bar chart on the percentage change in natural gas prices for household consumers in the second half of 2021 compared with previous year's same semester in the EU, the euro area, EU Member States and some of the EFTA countries, candidate countries, potential candidates and other countries.
Figure 4: Change in natural gas prices for household consumers compared with previous year's same semester, first half 2022
(%)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202)

Gas prices in purchasing power standard

In Map 1, gas prices for household consumers in the first half of 2022 are shown in purchasing power standard (PPS) grouping the available countries in six categories, with gas price categories ranging from above 11.6 PPS per 100 kWh to below 6.0 PPS per 100 kWh. The final burden for the consumers needs to be calculated based on their own consumption. The gas prices per 100kWh, expressed in purchasing power standard were highest in Sweden (17.8), Bulgaria (13.8) and Estonia (13.5). The lowest gas prices based on the Purchase Power Standard were observed in Hungary (4.7) and Slovakia (6.0).


Map on natural gas prices in purchasing power standard for household consumers in the second half 2021 in the EU Member States and some EFTA countries, candidate countries and potential candidates. Each available country is grouped to one of six categories ranging from above 11.6 PPS per 100 kWh to below 6 PPS per 100 kWh.
Map 1: Gas prices for household consumers, first half 2022
(PPS per 100 kWh)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_202)

Natural gas prices for non-household consumers

Gas prices for non-household consumers highest in Sweden and Finland

For non-household consumers in the EU (defined for the purpose of this article as medium-sized consumers with an annual consumption between 10 000 GJ and 100 000 GJ), natural gas prices in the first half of 2022 were highest in Sweden (€0.1429 per kWh) at more than twice the EU average, followed by Finland (€0.1370 per kWh) and Denmark (€0.1062 per kWh). The lowest prices were recorded in Belgium (€0.0499 per kWh) (see Figure 5).

The EU average price — a weighted average using the most recent (first half 2022) data for natural gas consumption by non-household consumers — was €0.0652 per kWh.

Vertical stacked bar chart on the natural gas prices for non-household consumers in the first half 2022 in the EU, the euro area, EU Member States and some EFTA countries, candidate countries, potential candidates and other countries. Each bar shows the two components of the price, which are the price without taxes, and the non-recoverable taxes.
Figure 5: Natural gas prices for non-household consumers, first half 2022
(€ per kWh)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_203)

Figure 6 shows the development of natural gas prices for non-household consumers in the EU since the first half of 2008. These prices for non-household consumers do not display the seasonal effect observed for household consumers (see Figure 2). Three peaks are observed in the natural gas total price for non-household consumers since the data collection started. After falling to €0.031 per kWh in the second half of 2009, the price increased each half year peaking at €0.042 per kWh in the first half of 2013. Then, it decreased every semester, reaching a low of €0.029 in the second half of 2017, before rising again until the first semester 2019. Since then, prices decreased until the first semester of 2021, when the price increased from €0.028 per kWh in the second half of 2020 to €0.302 per kWh. Excluding taxes, in the first semester of 2021, the price is €0.0238 per kWh, almost unchanged from the €0.0238 per kWh in the second half of 2020, which was the lowest price since 2008. In the second semester of 2021 we observe a substantial price increase to €0.0365 per kWh, which continued in the first semester of 2022 reaching €0.0588 per kWh.

The weight of all the taxes have increased from around 7.5 % in 2008 to around 27 % in the first semester of 2021. In the first semester 2022 the weight of all taxes decreased to 11 %.

Line chart with four lines showing the development of natural gas prices for non-household consumers in the EU from the first half of 2008 to the second half of 2021. The lines show the following four different prices: prices including taxes, prices excluding taxes, the prices of the first half of 2008 including taxes adjusted for inflation, and the prices of the first half of 2008 excluding taxes adjusted for inflation.
Figure 6: Development of natural gas prices for non-household consumers, EU, 2008-2021
(€ per kWh)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_203)

Figure 7 presents the proportion of taxes and levies in the total natural gas price that non-household consumers cannot recover. For non-household consumers, the share of these non-recoverable taxes in the first half of 2022 was 29.7 % in the Netherlands, 19.9 % in Sweden and 16.5 % in Germany. Greece (-27.7 %), Bulgaria (-24.2 %) and Romania (0.8 %) found themselves at the other end of the spectrum, registering the lowest shares of taxes. Negative percentages are registered because of the governmental subsidies and allowances provided to natural gas non-household consumers.

Vertical bar chart on the share of taxes and levies paid by non-household consumers for natural gas in the first half 2022 in the EU, the euro area, EU Member States and some EFTA countries, candidate countries, potential candidates and other countries.
Figure 7: Share of taxes and levies paid by non-household consumers for natural gas, first half 2022
(%)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_203)

Development of gas prices for non-household consumers

Figure 8 shows the change in natural gas prices for non-household consumers including all non-recoverable taxes and levies from the first half of 2021 to the first half of 2022. For comparison purposes, the national currencies were used. These prices increased in all 25 EU Member States having reported these data — Cyprus and Malta do not report natural gas prices in the non-household sector. The increases ranged from 67 % to 271 %. The price increased the most in Lithuania (270.9 %), followed by Romania (249.1 %) and Estonia (219.9 %). Natural gas prices for the non-household sector increased the least in Germany (67.1 %).

Horizontal bar chart on the percentage change in natural gas prices for non-household consumers in the first half of 2022 compared with previous year's same semester in the EU, the Euro area, EU Member States and some EFTA countries, candidate countries, potential candidates and other countries.
Figure 8: Change in natural gas prices for non-household consumers compared with previous year's same semester, first half 2022
(%)
Source: Eurostat (nrg_pc_203)

Source data for tables and figures (MS Excel)

Data sources

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 5 555 kWh and 55 555 kWh (20 Gigajoule (GJ) and 200 GJ). All figures are consumer retail prices and include taxes, levies and VAT. Cyprus, Malta and Finland do not report natural gas prices in the household sector. The full datasets for gas prices for households consumers are available at:

and


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 correspond to the basic price for natural gas, including all non-recoverable taxes and levies. Cyprus and Malta do not report natural gas prices in the non-household sector. Quantities of natural gas used for chemical processes or electricity and/or combined heat and power production are excluded from these data. The full datasets for gas prices for non-households consumers are available at:

and

Methodology

Prices in national currencies are converted into euro using the average exchange rate of the period for which the prices were reported.

Prices are always compared with the prices of the same semesters (i.e. year on year) in order to avoid seasonal effects.

In 2016, Regulation (EU) No 2016/1952 entered into force. It defines the obligation for the collection and dissemination of natural gas prices for household and non-household consumers. 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 Regulation (EU) No 2016/1952, the definition was changed from industrial to non-household consumers to have a unique methodology for all reporting countries. Until January 2017, the reporting authorities provided their price data for the household sector on a voluntary basis.

Natural 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 a number of characteristics including the amount of natural gas consumed. 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. Natural gas prices for household consumers are divided into three annual consumption bands and, for non-household consumers, into six different consumption bands.

The prices collected cover average prices over a period of six months (a half-year or semester) from January to June (first semester) and from July to December (second semester) of each year. Prices include the basic price of natural gas, transmission and distribution charges, meter rental, and other services. Natural gas prices for household consumers presented in this article include taxes, levies, non-tax levies, fees and value added tax (VAT) as this generally reflects the total price paid by household consumers. As non-household consumers are usually able to recover VAT and some other taxes, prices for non-household consumers are shown without VAT and other recoverable taxes/levies/fees. The unit for natural gas prices is that of euro per kilowatt-hour (€ per kWh).

Allowances in the reference period 2022 Semester 1

Belgium: Households VAT was reduced from 21 % to 6 % since 1 April 2022 (for each household).

Bulgaria: In response to the increased prices of natural gas for the final consumers, the government has approved a program to compensate the household customers for several winter months starting with December 2021. The program envisages a temporary mechanism to support above-mentioned customers through the gas suppliers in the form of a monthly compensation, calculated and invoiced for every customer based on its consumption for the month. The compensations are fixed price in BGN/MWh without VAT and that is why they are deducted from the total final amount after VAT charging.

Czechia: In addition to introducing a compensation scheme for electricity and natural gas prices, the government granted a temporary waiver of VAT on natural gas (LPG included) and electricity. The waiver applies to all supplies from November 2021 onwards.

Denmark: The Danish government in August 2020 payed out a lump sum (DKK 6.000) per households affected by high cost for heating – in case they at the same time have had a relative low income in 2020. The main part of the compensation (DKK billion 1,63) was paid to user of natural gas, and in average it corresponds to app. DKK 64 per GJ – using 2021-consumption for the provisional estimate. It was not possible to allocate the compensation to size groups, why the average compensation per GJ has been deducted in all three size groups. Using a rough estimate about two thirds of the household user of natural gas was compensated.

Germany: There were no subsidies for electricity or natural gas in any form in Germany in the first half year 2022.

Estonia: From January to March 2022, a price limit has been established for electricity and gas bills, the remaining part of which is automatically compensated by the state for private consumers. There is a price ceiling for domestic consumers of 6.5 cents per kWh or 0.6792 €/m3 (+VAT) for gas consumption up to 2.75 MWh per month. The part exceeding the price floor is compensated. From February to March 2022, non-domestic consumers will be compensated for the natural gas price of 2.74 euros per megawatt hour. The support extends to all entrepreneurs and is automatically reflected in the invoices. From December 2021 to March 2022, all gas consumers will be reimbursed 100 % of the gas network service fee. From September 2021 to March 2022, up to middle-income families will be reimbursed 80 % of the price increase of a specific type of energy (electricity, gas or room heating) on the basis of electricity, gas and heating bills. For Aprill to June 2022 there was no compensation.

Ireland: Due to the recent increases in energy prices, Ireland has introduced measures to alleviate the burden on final consumers. Domestic electricity customers, including pay as you go customers, received a one-off exceptional payment of €200 between April and June 2022.

Greece: All consumers (household and non-household) were entitled of a subsidy for the consumption of natural gas. The level of the subsidy was different for the two categories of consumer and for each month.

Spain: The Government of Spain has adopted measures during 2021 to cushion this increase and these measures have focused on the "taxes, fees and charges" component. Thus, the Government has reduced the charges during the first semester of 2022. Specifically, it has reduced the applicable rate of VAT.

France: - Individuals with regulated prices (less than 30% of customers) had their prices frozen on November 1, 2021. This freeze had consequences for customers with prices indexed to these prices. - The poorest households can benefit from an "energy check" (pre-existing but reinforced measure) - Dwellings located in buildings collectively heated by gas can benefit from aid equivalent to the freezing of regulated tariffs - A targeted subsidy aimed at offsetting the additional costs of gas expenses for large consumer companies

Croatia: Gas (starting from 1 April 2022) -VAT reduction to 5 % -support for households, the amount of support: 10 lp/kWh -support for non-households, average yearly consumption to 10 GWh, the amount of support: 15 lp/kWh Additionally, in September 2022, the Government of the Republic of Croatia has adopted “Decree on eliminating disturbances on the domestic energy market” (“Uredba o otklanjanju poremećaja na domaćem tržištu energije”, Official Gazette No. 104/2022, 106/2022 and 121/2022) by which introduces the price cap on gas producers price, at which gas producer sells gas to the gas trader for the needs of settling losses for gas distribution, for the needs of household final customers who use/or will use the supply under public service obligations and for certain non-household customers.

Italy: The Italian Government has implemented extraordinary and temporary measures to contain the exceptional increases in energy prices with the allocation of resources from the State Budget. More precisely, the Government has adopted various measures starting from the second half of 2021, which were then continued and, in some cases, strengthened during 2022.

The measures began in 2021 with legislative decree 73/2021 and continued in the same year with legislative decree 130/2021. Further measures were then arranged for the current year, initially with the Budget Law for 2022 and then with the legislative decrees 4, 17, 21, 80, 115 and 144 of 2022.

It was therefore possible to reduce or to set to zero the price components aimed to cover the general system charges in the electricity sector (ASOS and ARIM tariffs) and in the natural gas sector (RE, GS e UG3 tariffs) for household users and non-household users until now.

Moreover, the Government temporarily reduced the VAT rate applicable to the supply of gas for civil and industrial uses to 5%, in the invoices issued for consumption of October, November and December 2021. This reduction was then further extended to cover consumption until December 2022 (see details in the table 1). Under usual conditions, the VAT rate applied to gas consumption is: - 10% for annual consumption up to 480 m3, and 22% over this threshold for household users; - 10% for non-household users.

Finally, the Government adopted some measures which, while not having a direct impact on energy prices, help consumers to alleviate the higher cost of energy products. These measures consist in expanding the number of beneficiaries of energy bonuses and in increasing the value of these bonuses for household consumers in poor economic conditions and in granting a tax credit to non-domestic consumers for the purchase of electricity and natural gas.


Luxembourg: For the period from 1 May to 31 December 2022, the Government has decided to bear the costs for the distribution network as well as the fixed monthly fee for residential customers.

Netherlands: An extra compensation instrument that the NL government has implemented this year is a lump sum paid directly to the consumers’ accounts. Households with an income up to 120 % of the social minimum income are eligible for a lump sum of 1300 euro for this year.

Austria: In the first half of 2022, the first vouchers for energy cost compensation in the amount of € 150 were redeemed. This will be included in the annual electricity bill. However, the number of vouchers was still low in the first half of 2022. 

Poland: 1. reduction of the VAT rate from 23 % to 8 % from January 1 to January 31, 2022, 2. reduction of the VAT rate from 8 % to 0 % from February 1, 2022, In addition, from January 1, 2022, households in multi-unit buildings of cooperatives and condominiums, as well as hospitals, schools, kindergartens, nurseries and cultural institutions were covered by special gas tariffs.

Slovenia: From February 2022, the excise duty for final consumers of natural gas was reduced by 50 %: used for heating for 50 % (from €0.0184 per Sm3 to €0.0092 per Sm3).

Iceland: Iceland is an independent producer of heat and electricity for housing. Heating is generally of geothermal origin. All electricity in the country is produced in hydro-powerplants in the country and thus does not rely on gas/nuclear/coal/fuels e.t.c. Iceland‘s electricity net is not connected to Europe. The associtated prices are thus not surging in Iceland as in many other countries.  The government has not issued any measures to compensate prices for heating or for electricity nor is there any pressure to do so.

Context

The price and reliability of energy supplies are key elements in a country’s energy supply strategy. Natural gas prices are of particular importance for international competitiveness, as natural gas might represent a significant proportion of total energy costs for industrial and service-providing businesses. Contrary to the price of fossil fuels, which are usually traded on global markets with relatively uniform prices, natural gas prices vary widely among EU Member States.

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, Energy Emergency - preparing, purchasing and protecting the EU together, COM2022(553) final, coordinates solidarity efforts, secures the energy supply, stabilises price levels and support households and companies facing high energy prices.

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, Tackling rising energy prices: a toolbox for action and support, COM2021(0660) final, points out the observed increase of wholesale energy prices. It is expected that it will be reflected in the final consumer prices in the official statistics for this reference period. The energy prices evolution in the second semester 2021 will be available as European official statistics level in April 2022.

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions, REPowerEU: Joint European Action for more affordable, secure and sustainable energy, COM2022(108) final, paves the way to reach independence from Russian gas well before the end of the decade.

In 2019, the European Commission presented the Clean energy for all Europeans package. The Commission completed a comprehensive update of its energy policy framework to facilitate the transition away from fossil fuels towards cleaner energy and to deliver on the EU’s Paris Agreement commitments for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The Fit for 55 legislative proposals cover a wide range of policy areas including climate, energy, transport and taxation, setting out the ways in which the Commission will reach its updated 2030 target in real terms.

Directive 2009/73/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 July 2009 concerning common rules for the internal market in natural gas aims to introduce common rules for the transmission, distribution, supply and storage of natural gas with the objectives of providing market access and enabling fair and non-discriminatory competition.

Regulation (EU) 2019/942 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 June 2019 establishing a European Union Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators. ACER, among others, assists the regulatory authorities in carrying out, at EU level, the regulatory tasks performed in the EU countries.

Regulation (EU) No 2016/1952 tackles data weaknesses led to the recommendation to improve the detail, transparency and consistency of energy price data collection. An energy prices and costs report would be prepared every 2 years. The European Commission thus published such a report also in 2016 and 2018.

The seventh report on energy prices and costs, as part of the [1] was published on 18 October 2022. The 2022 report is the third report since the adoption of the European Green Deal and the first after the adoption of the REPowerEU plan. It highlights the challenges that the energy sector has faced in the past 12 months and the progress made in addressing both shorter-term issues and Europe’s long-term climate goals. In particular, the report takes stock of the EU’s energy policy response to the current energy crisis, exacerbated by Russia’s war in Ukraine.

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 is more effective when publishing and broadcasting as widely as possible prices and pricing systems.

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