First estimates – Press release (May 6, 2014)

Global natural gas activity showed very mixed results in 2013, according to CEDIGAZ in its latest survey: The 2013 Natural Gas Year in Review

PARIS, 6 May 2013. In an economic and geopolitical climate still unstable, the world gas expansion moderated for the second consecutive year, according to the first estimates for 2013 released by the International Association CEDIGAZ today.

Natural gas consumption only rose by 1.3%, down from an average growth of 2.8% per year in the previous decade. Natural gas still suffers in particular from severe competition with coal in the power generation sector. Inside the EU-28, actual consumption was estimated down 1.9% to 460 Billion cubic metres (Bcm). This poor performance brought European consumption to levels not seen in more than 15 years. In the US, rising gas prices compared to 2012 has often made coal more competitive and penalized gas consumption in the power generation sector, causing it to fall by 10.5%.

International Gas Prices – April 7, 2014

NBP: very pronounced downward trend

NBP and coal pricesThe NBP price in March stood at €23.2/MWh (US$9.4/MBtu), 4.7% down from February and 13.6% down from January. The first listing for the month of April was at €20.7/MWh (US$8.4/MBtu), 10.8% below the average for March. These are relatively low levels which mark a return to the listings seen in 2011. However, the market is not expecting to fall dramatically over the summer, and a mean price of €20.9/MWh is forecast for NBP. Several factors seem to be behind this downward trend. Demand continues to be weak in the UK – 79 Gm3 in 2013, as opposed to 99 Gm3 in 2010. This is also the case for the 28 countries that make up the European Union – consumption in 2013 was at 462 Gm3 (source: Eurogas), down 13% (70 Gm3) compared with 2010. The competitive price with coal, estimated at €14/MWh, is also considerably lower than the current price. And the price of Brent is falling, now standing at less than US$106/b.