It seems to be just pure coincidence that due to a number of factors European gas prices have soared in the last months. Due to low reserves, Russian supply bottlenecks, a lack of wind in the North Sea, high demand of China for coal, rising demand for liquefied gas in Asia and rising prices for European carbon permits intertwined and resulted in rocketing natural-gas prices. /The Economist, Sep 20th 2021/.

It is, however, not at all just pure coincidence. This energy-crisis reflects both supply and demand, the lack of regulation and overregulation, the weakness of the EU and the structural problems of the energy sectors in some big member countries.

Above all, this mini-crisis is due to the lack of alternatives and the weak competitiveness of the European economy. The U.S. and Asia came out of the Covid-19 crisis far better than the E.U. and the present energy crisis seems to be only a warning of the coming energy shocks of the 2020s.

Governor Matolcsy, MNB, the Central Bank of Hungary

Re “What is behind rocketing natural-gas prices?