Finland has started the year 2021 with a general rise in the prices of energy products. One of the products that have increased the price considerably year-on-year is automotive gasoline.Tens of thousands of drivers have already noticed it when filling the tank.
According to Statistics Finland's fresh data, the general rise in energy prices that started at the end of last year continued in the first quarter affected by higher prices of imported fuels and larger demand for heating fuels and tax increases.
In spring 2020, the world market price of crude oil fell sharply as the corona pandemic reduced demand and no agreement was reached on the adjustment of production. But when the agreement was reached the prices rose rapidly. In March 2021, the import price of crude oil was at its highest since February 2019.
The rise in import prices of oil has been reflected in rising consumer prices of liquid fuels. The consumer price of motor gasoline was 8% higher and that of diesel oil 5% higher in March than one year earlier. This rise in fuel prices was also affected by the significant tax increases that took effect in August last year.
The price of light fuel oil went up by 7% in the corresponding period.
Prices rose clearly on the Nordic electricity market in the first quarter.
According to Statistics Finland, the rise is explained by the exceptionally low prices in 2020, from which prices came back close to the average for recent years. The system price of the Nordic electricity exchange derived from the sell and buy bids on the exchange was nearly four times higher in March and the area price for Finland nearly double compared with the price of last year's March.
The rise in electricity market prices was also visible in the 1 to 3% rise in consumer prices of electricity in the first quarter depending on the customer group. Correspondingly, prices fell for enterprise customers in the smallest consumption groups but rose clearly for the largest customers.
Among domestic fuels, the rise in the price of forest chippings continued in the first quarter. Compared with the first quarter of the year before, the price was 5% higher. The customer prices of district heat were good 1% per cent higher in January than in the corresponding period last year.