The recent plunge in international gas prices appears to have neutralized a retail price advantage that had been gained by heating oil, made possible by generous subsidies. Natural gas and heating oil are now at similar price levels for November.
Though natural gas suppliers have yet to announce retail prices for November, their price levels for the month are widely expected to remain unchanged compared to October, at a level of between 11 and 12 cents per KWh.
Besides a subsidy offered by gas utility DEPA, gas prices are also shaped by the TTF benchmark average of the previous month. Amsterdam’s TTF benchmark ended October at levels of between 135 and 145 euros per MWh, well below levels of 200 to 210 euros per MWh a month earlier.
In response, DEPA has greatly reduced its subsidy for consumers from 9 cents per KWh to 2.5 cents per KWh. Deducting the reduced 2.5 cent subsidy results in a retail natural gas price of 11 to 12 cents per KWh.
Heating oil will also be sold at roughly this level, or marginally higher, announcements made yesterday by the country’s refineries and their retail arms, for an extended period of heating oil subsidies, have shown.
ELPE announced it would extend its 6 cent heating oil subsidy (7.5 cents with VAT) until November 15, while Motor Oil informed it will continue offering a price as competitive as that of October.
As a result, consumers can expect heating oil to be priced at less than 1.40 euros per liter for at least another 15 days.