European Gas Prices Plunge to Lowest in 21 Months, Undermining Putin’s Energy Battle

European natural gas prices have reached their lowest point in 21 months, undermining Vladimir Putin’s campaign in Ukraine.

Dutch front-month futures, the European gas pricing standard, have dropped up to 1.9% today, falling below $37 per megawatt hour, as a result of unprecedented liquified natural gas (LNG) imports across the continent.

This marks the lowest level since July 2021, which it also reached last month, after four consecutive weeks of decreases.

Prices have decreased around 88% from their highest point last August following Russia’s incursion into Ukraine.

In April, LNG imports to Western Europe soared to a record 10.6 million metric tons, fueled by shipments to France, Belgium, and the Netherlands.

The United States provided approximately 50% of the fuel, with Russian cargoes contributing about 10%.

This development coincides with a 10% drop in Russia’s gas production in the first quarter of the year, amounting to 180 billion cubic meters (bcm), as reported by the daily newspaper Kommersant, owned by oligarch Alisher Usmanov.

The report indicated that Gazprom, Russia’s leading producer holding roughly 15% of global gas reserves, experienced a production decline of nearly 18% from January to March.

LNG imports have emerged as a crucial strategy in Europe’s quest to prevent the severe fluctuations experienced during the peak of the energy crisis.

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