SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 29 January 2022, Saturday |

Power costs in Europe soar to record high in 2021

Europe has never paid more for power as it will in 2021.

This year, the average cost of power for short-term supply reached new highs, soaring by more than 200 percent in Germany, France, Spain, and the United Kingdom. Costs increased by 47% year on year in the Nordic area, where plentiful hydropower sources tend to keep prices under control.

Consumers and big industrial users would face increased bills as a result of the credit crisis in 2022. Metal smelters from France to Spain have already been forced to reduce output, while some fertilizer makers have been forced to suspend production entirely. Norsk Hydro’s majority-owned factory in Slovakia was the latest victim, with the company declaring on Thursday that it will reduce production even more.

And there isn’t much hope in sight. Even if the year concludes with mild weather, which reduces demand for heat and power, homeowners may face eye-watering price rises next year as wholesale expenses are passed on. Industries will also have to deal with increasingly restricted supply in January, when around 30% of France’s nuclear fleet will be offline.

According to Bloomberg calculations based on daily auctions, day-ahead electricity prices in Germany were €96.85 per megawatt-hour this year, while costs in France were €109.17. Users in Spain paid €111.93, while those in the United Kingdom paid an average of £117.82, and those in the Nordic area paid €62.31.