Eesti Gaas chair: Natural gas prices 'significantly' lower this winter

Margus Kaasik appearing on 'Terevisioon'.
Margus Kaasik appearing on 'Terevisioon'. Source: ERR

Natural gas customers in Estonia and across Europe can expect significantly lower prices than those experienced last winter, board chair of Eesti Gaas Margus Kaasik said Friday.

Appearing on ETV morning show "Terevisioon," Kaasik (pictured) said: "We will see significantly lower prices this winter than last year."

"Looking ahead, the picture is quite promising. Europe's storage tanks are at over 90 percent capacity; those in Latvia are over 80 percent full," Kaasik went on. "The price forecasts are also good."

From next month, private customers will see Eesti Gaas-supplied natural gas costing €47 per Megawatt-hour (MWh), significantly lower than last winter when prices in the hundreds of euros were seen – though the peak came in August 2023, at nearly €340 per MWh.

"Transactions on the futures market do not show a significantly higher price either, while weather forecasts also foresee a mild winter in Europe," he added. 

"There are no signs of any price increase," Kaasik continued.

There are more than 100,000 natural gas customers in Estonia; Eesti Gaas is the market leader and brings more than a third of natural gas not only to Estonia but also to the other two Baltic states and to Finland, making it the regional leading importer.

Kaasik said that none of this natural gas was of Russian origin, adding it came from large tankers from the U.S. and elsewhere – meaning Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) which is then re-gassified on the land.

Both Estonia and Finland have the facilities to dock LNG vessels, and have been linked by a submarine natural gas pipeline since 2019.

ERR reports that as of Thursday, the fourth quarter 2023 Netherlands-based TTF price stood at €43 per MWh.

While this is lower than 2022's prices, it is still significantly higher than the level seen on the TTF at the start of 2021, when the price level was €17 per MWh.

Natural gas prices started soaring from late summer that year, ahead of record prices being posted in electricity in Estonia also.

At the start of 2023, natural gas prices were as high as €100 per MWh, but the trend has been for a fall since then.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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