Bulgaria utilities regulator cuts gas prices by 14.2% for March 2023

Bulgaria’s utilities regulator has approved a 14.2 per cent decrease in the regulated gas price in the country for the month of March, setting the new price at 106.74 leva a MWh, excluding transportation costs, excise and value-added tax.

The Energy and Water Regulatory Commission (EWRC) decision to reduce the price for a second consecutive month puts the regulated gas price in Bulgaria at its lowest since December 2021, when the price was 102.33 leva a MWh.

Last year, the gas price in Bulgaria fluctuated wildly, between 109.88 leva a MWh at its lowest in February 2022 and 353.21 leva a MWh at its highest in September, as Russia’s Gazprom reduced deliveries to European markets (it cut off supplies to Bulgaria in April).

But the launch of an interconnector pipeline to Greece in October, which allowed Bulgaria to boost deliveries of Azeri gas, and purchases of liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargos have both put downward pressure on the gas price.

“Bulgaria and the European Union have managed well after the shutdown of Gazprom deliveries. Market trends show that the apocalyptic scenarios of darkness and cold in the absence of such deliveries have not come true and the previous extremely high prices of gas are now history,” EWRC head Ivan Ivanov said.

Ivanov said that the price cut in March was also due to the continued decline in prices on European gas hubs, prompted by the mild weather and the fact that European gas storage facilities remain fairly full.

(Photo: Marco Caliulo/sxc.hu)

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