France Becomes Europe's Largest Electricity Exporter

tendata blogTrade Trends News

ten data blog09-08-2023

According to a new report on the European electricity market published by EnAppSys, France's net exports totaled 17.6 TWh in the first six months of 2023, with most of the power going to the UK (8 TWh) and Italy (9 TWh).



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Reasons for the surge in French electricity exports

Jean-Paul Harreman, Director of EnAppSys BV, said: "The increase in French exports compared to the previous year is due to the increased availability of the country's nuclear assets. While availability is still 10-15% below normal, the increase in installed capacity of 5 to 10 GW compared to last year has helped shift the French energy balance towards exports again."


"As cheaper generation becomes available on the French market, it is once again starting to export to the UK. The price differential ensures that cheaper electricity flows from France to the UK."



Sweden's electricity exports

"Swedish exports remained stable compared to the second half of last year."


Sweden was the second largest net exporter of electricity in the first half of the year, sending a net 14.6 TWh to other countries, while Spain overtook Germany as the third largest net exporter, with a total of 8.8 TWh.


Jean-Paul Harreman (Jean-Paul Harreman) said: "Spain continues to profit from lower gas prices for power generation and large-scale renewable energy generation. The significant increase in solar power generation in Spain is driving the growth in exports."


Read Also: Powering Global Trade: An Overview of the 2022 Electricity Exports


Germany Becomes an Importer of Electricity

Germany's net exports amounted to just 0.6 TWh, compared to 9.2 TWh in the second half of last year.


"In Germany, the closure of nuclear power plants is the main reason for the shift in the energy balance towards imports. These closures meant that Germany had to obtain additional power from other countries during a period of low renewable generation," said Harreman.



The situation in other countries

When considering net exports as a percentage of demand, Bosnia overtook Bulgaria as the country with the highest percentage of electricity generation exports (44.8%).


Bulgaria's exports are down because of the fall in European gas prices since August 2022, which has led to the country's lignite production being excluded from wider European gas production," said Gabor Szatmari, EnAppSys area manager for Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). In the case of Bosnia, total hydro power generation doubled from H2 2022 to H1 2023, with around 87% of this new production exported to other countries."


In the first six months of 2023, Italy remains the largest net importer, sourcing 25.9 TWh from abroad, with 9.9 TWh from Switzerland and 9.5 TWh from France.


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