Warmer-than-average temperatures and strong pipeline gas imports from Norway have resulted in German gas storage withdrawals remaining subdued for the period Jan. 1-15, compared to a year earlier, as uncertainty over the future of Russian supply lingers.
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Temperatures in Germany have started the year eight degrees Celsius higher and have continued to trend mostly above the seasonal norm, according to data from Custom Weather. Storage withdrawals have eased significantly in the period Jan.1-15 to record a 44% decline compared to the same period in 2021.
German gas storage withdrawals for the first 15 days had averaged 1.39 TWh/d, with cumulative withdrawals amounting to just below 21 TWh in total, according to the latest estimates from Gas Infrastructure Europe's AGSI.
For the same period in 2021, average daily gas storage withdrawals had averaged almost 1.1 TWh higher -- reported by GIE's AGSI at 2.47 TWh/d -- and cumulative withdrawals for the period Jan. 1-15 were more than 16.1 TWh above 2022 levels, having reached 37 TWh the previous year.
Similarly, total domestic gas demand in Germany averaged roughly above 292 million cu m/d for Week 1 of 2022, compared to an average of over 400 million cu m/d for the same period in 2021, according to data from S&P Global Platts Analytics.
However, German domestic gas demand appears to be picking up, averaging near 403 million cu m/d for the period Jan. 10-15, despite remaining 30 million cu m/d lower on the year.
Further supporting the conservative inventory management so far in 2022, German gas imports from Norway reached to 1,784 million cu m for the period Jan. 1-15, more than tripling on the year, according to Platts Analytics data. This has partially offset the restricted flow of Russian gas supply.
German gas inventories currently hover just above 112 TWh for the gas day beginning Jan. 15, more than 26TWh lower on the year. German gas tanks were last seen less than 47% full, having dipped below the half-full level on Jan. 11, estimates from GIE's AGSI showed.
By comparison, German gas tanks dipped below the half-full level two weeks later in 2021, on the gas day beginning Jan. 25.