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Budapest Still Has the Lowest Household Energy Prices in the EU

Hungary Today 2024.01.05.

Maintaining its long-standing position, Budapest again came out on top in December in a comparison of EU capitals of where electricity and gas are cheapest for households. However, including capitals in non-EU countries, households in Kyiv, Ukraine had to pay less than Budapest for electricity and gas, Világgazdaság reports.

In Europe, the difference in net residential electricity prices was six times higher in December, and 17 times higher for gas, a survey by VaasaETT found. Among EU countries, tariffs in the Hungarian capital remained the lowest.

The Finnish research firm looked at the reasons for, and direction of changes in electricity and gas prices for households in European capitals. It found that Kyiv had the lowest unit prices for electricity and gas among non-EU capitals. The analysis was commissioned by E-Control Austria and the Hungarian Energy and Public Utility Regulatory Authority (MEKH).

The reason why Hungary (in this case Budapest) has consistently been the best performer in the EU is due to the fact that residential tariffs have been frozen at low levels for several years.

The small month-to-month changes in the Budapest tariff in euro is only due to the movement in the forint exchange rate.


From August 2022, a new element of the regulation, the concept of average consumption, was introduced as a new price effect. This means that households in Hungary can only buy electricity and gas at the universal service tariff up to the average consumption, and pay a higher price for the amount above that. However, the impact of this is not specifically addressed in VaasaETT’s survey.

The net end-user electricity price in Budapest was 9.61 euro cents per kilowatt-hour.

The Kyiv price was about a third lower than this, while the EU average was two and a half times higher. Residential electricity was most expensive in Dublin, Ireland (42.75 euro cents), London, UK (40.33 euro cents), and Berlin, Germany (38.09 euro cents). Compared to a year earlier, Oslo saw the biggest increase in electricity prices, with a 37 percent rise in the electricity component of the tariff. The Norwegian capital was followed by Sweden (plus 14 percent), Spain (plus 8 percent), and Finland (plus 7 percent). The decreases were smaller, for example in Berlin and Dublin (minus 3 percent).

Average electricity end-user prices remained generally stable towards the end of the year, rising slightly in December compared to the previous month,

VaasaETT reports.

Household Energy Remains the Cheapest in Hungary within Europe
Household Energy Remains the Cheapest in Hungary within Europe

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The net residential end-user price of gas in December was 2.64 euro cents per kilowatt hour in Budapest and 2.02 euro cents in Kyiv.

The European average was four times that of Budapest and eleven times that of Sweden,

but there is a specific reason for the huge gap. In Sweden, only 77,000 households are supplied with gas, of which 50,000 are served by a separate network in Stockholm.

The size of this tariff has jumped the most in a year in Tallinn – by 16 percent – due to the increase in the gas component of the tariff. The biggest drop – nine percent – was in Berlin, where gas has just become cheaper. Other European changes were four percent or less.

VaasaETT also pointed to the persistence of price stability in this market at the start of the year, as well as the impact of moderate heating demand across much of Europe and large storage inventories in December. The TTF benchmark index fell below EUR 40 per megawatt-hour for the first time since January 2022, the quarter of the December 2022 peak.

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Via Világgazdaság, Featured image: Pixabay

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