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    Dutch GasTerra Revenues Drop


Sales were also down and the company is gradually preparing itself for c;losure.

by: William Powell

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Dutch GasTerra Revenues Drop

Dutch gas marketer GasTerra's revenues plunged 38% to €5.5bn last year, down from €8.8bn in 2019, it said in a February 19 statement. But the volume it traded fell by a just 10bn m³ to 41.6bn m³ despite rising demand.

Mild temperatures meant households, the main market for low-calorie gas in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany, led to lower Groningen output, while low prices benefited the competition. Production from the Groningen field for gas year 2019-2020 (Oct 1-Sept 30) dropped to a little over 8.6bn m³.

"The summer period in particular showed a steeper price drop than in previous years. Measured across the whole of 2020, the average gas price came out at €0.13/m³, a quarter less than in 2019," it said.

According to a preliminary analysis, Dutch consumers bought 39.5bn m³ last year, an increase of 1.2bn m³ on 2019. And between 2015 and 2020, demand has gone up by an avereage of 1bn m³/yr, mainly owing to gas-fired power plants.

"It is clear that GasTerra cannot benefit from this development in terms of sales or volume. A significant proportion of the company’s trading portfolio consists of domestic gas from Groningen and the Dutch small fields, but these volumes are greatly declining. The market is compensating for this decline with additional gas imports," it said. 

GasTerra is preparing to cease trading December 2024, a few years after Groningen is to be closed. It said the phase-out will involve unprecedented challenges, both for the organisation and the staff, for whom a redundancy scheme has been set up. Most have left for other jobs.

In the meantime it continues to support biomethane and green gas projects. "Compared to other renewable energy carriers, the volume of green gas produced is already considerable and will only keep growing in the years to come; innovative technologies will also have a part to play," it said.

CEO Annie Krist said: “Our mission was and is to add as much value as possible to the gas we buy. We have managed to do this again very successfully in 2020, despite difficult circumstances, and I would like to congratulate my colleagues for their achievements.”