Gas is more important than ever with the war in Ukraine. It is still a question whether there will be enough Russian gas for Europe – and with that, for Hungary. A possible solution to gas supply shortages could be America, but how much would it cost?
According to erstemarket.hu, the price of natural gas is struggling with the level of 200 EUR/MWh. On the other hand, during the weekend, the amount of gas transported on the North Stream decreased slightly. From the previous 14.4 to 13.1 GWh/h, this morning the amount of gas transported was 14 GWh/h again, which is about 20 percent of the gas pipeline’s 73 GWh/h capacity. In 2020, the price of one cubic meter of natural gas was 9.5 eurocents. Considering the current EUR price, it was 40 HUF. Last year, it was already 47 eurocents, which means 188 HUF, while this year, the average price is 1.09 EUR per cubic meter. However, if the price stays like this, it would mean a doubling again next year, which would mean a price of 2 EUR, i.e. HUF 800 at the current exchange rate.
If Hungary’s consumption does not decrease and we do not find alternative delivery routes, the natural gas to be purchased could cost up to 16 billion EUR.
Meanwhile, the price of American natural gas is 28 cents (HUF 112) per cubic meter. Even including the cost of transportation, this is much cheaper than Russian gas, reports profitline.hu. However, there could be an energy mix, which would temporarily include coal and wood. But in the long run, we must move strongly towards hydrogen-based energy, even if we still have many technical problems with it.
Among the EU countries that provide data on this, the most expensive Russian gas arrived in Hungary in May, writes g7.hu. According to Eurostat’s foreign trade data, a cubic meter of gas entered the country for an average of 123 eurocents, which is HUF 475 based on the euro exchange rate at the time. The government said that by September, we could get gas at such a high price that it would make the overhead cuts unsustainable. The average price of Russian imports may increase to over HUF 600 per cubic meter by the beginning of autumn. The government reacted to this by massively restricting overhead reduction. MVM will certainly lose a lot in terms of serving households, but much less than it would have lost by keeping the original overhead cuts.
Source: erstemarket.hu, profitline.hu, g7.hu