EU boosts gas consumption by 12% in January

European Union member-states scaled up gas consumption by 12% year on year in January 2024 amid the cold spell in the region and demand reviving in the industrial sector, the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) said in its report.

"In January 2024, the EU gas demand witnessed a significant rebound, marking a return to double-digit growth. This surge, estimated at 12%, was primarily fuelled by the onset of colder weather, which increased heating needs in the residential sector. Additionally, there was a notable rise in gas consumption in the industrial sector, further contributing to the overall increase in demand, as natural gas prices recorded a declining trend during the month," GECF reported.

In particular, natural gas demand had an uptick by 16% in Germany to 9.2 bln cubic meters, 4% in Italy to 7.9 bln cubic meters, 3% in France to 5 bln cubic meters, and 13% in Spain to 3 bln cubic meters. Gas consumption in the United Kingdom increased by 9% to 8.1 bln cubic meters.

Pipeline gas import moved up by 7% annually in January 2024 in the EU and totaled 13.3 bln cubic meters, while it lost 1% month on month, GECF said. The share of Norwegian gas in pipeline supplies totaled 58% in January. The share of Russian gas was 18%.

Global liquefied natural gas (LNG) supplies gained 6.9% year on year and reached 37.53 mln metric tons. LNG imports by Europe fell for the seven month in a row to 11.15 mln metric tons or down 8.5% year on year in January. The decline in imports was driven by high gas reserves, growing pipeline imports and the demand drop in a number of markets. LNG imports by Asian nations gained 12% to 26.33 mln metric tons.

Top LNG supplies in January were the US, Qatar and Australia. Russia ranks fourth, according to GECF report.

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