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Published: 8 March 2017

Prices of imported fuels increased in the last quarter

According to Statistics Finland's data, prices of imported fuels made a clear upturn in the last quarter of 2016. This also affected the rise in the prices of liquid fuels and electricity. At the beginning of 2017, energy taxes were raised for several products.

Fuel Prices in Heat Production

Fuel Prices in Heat Production

Oil producer countries’ agreements to limit oil production in the last quarter of the year raised the prices of oil products imported to Finland. This was also reflected in the consumer prices of liquid fuels that made a clear upturn in December. The price of motor gasoline was four per cent higher and diesel oil ten per cent higher in December than one year earlier. For light fuel oil, the price rise in December was as much as 33 per cent year-on-year but it was also affected by the tax hike at the beginning of 2016.

The rise in the world market price of hard coal clearly affected the tax-free price of hard coal used in electricity production. In December, the year-on-year growth amounted to 50 per cent. Even the tax-free price of natural gas started to grow at the end of the year and it was 11 per cent higher in December than one year earlier. In Finland, the fuels for electricity production are tax-free while excise duty is paid on fuels used in heat production.

The prices of hard coal and natural gas used in heat production rose in the last quarter as a result of the increase in the excise duty at the beginning of 2016 and the rise in tax-free prices. Compared to the situation one year earlier, the price of hard coal was 25 per cent higher in December and the price of natural gas was 12 per cent higher. In turn, excise duty was lowered for milled peat used in heat production last March, due to which its price was ten per cent lower in the fourth quarter than one year before. The price of forest chips declined by one per cent in the last quarter. The price of wood pellets used by consumers was one per cent lower in November than one year ago.

The system price of the Nordic electricity exchange derived from the sell and buy bids on the exchange went up in the fourth quarter, which was affected by the especially poor water situation in the Nordic countries. In December, the average for the system price was EUR 31.79 per megawatt hour, which was 67 per cent more than one year earlier. Due to electricity transmission restrictions, the Finnish area price was, on average, seven per cent higher than the system price, that is, EUR 34.00 per megawatt hour, rising by 28 per cent from one year ago.

The electricity prices for end users rose more moderately than the exchange price. In December, the prices of electricity for household customers were, on average, three per cent higher than one year earlier. The prices for enterprise and corporate customers rose by two per cent for the smallest consumers and by ten per cent for the biggest consumers.

Source: Statistics Finland, Energy prices

Inquiries: Ville Maljanen 029 551 2691,

Director in charge: Ville Vertanen

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Updated 8.3.2017

Referencing instructions:

Statistics: Energy prices [e-publication].
ISSN=1799-800X. 4th quarter 2016. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 28.9.2023].
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