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Gas flow to Europe from Nord Stream 1 pipeline begins: Prices fall, Euro rises

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The maintenance works of Nord Stream 1, the largest pipeline carrying Russian gas to Germany, which started on 11 July, were completed and natural gas flow started from the line.

The Nord Stream 1 pipeline carries 55 billion cubic meters of gas per year from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea.

Markets and companies were worried that the downtime of the pipeline could be extended due to the Russia-Ukraine War. However, today, in the first hour of the flow, Russian officials stated that 48 million cubic meters of natural gas was supplied to the system.

In Germany, which confirmed the start of gas flow, it was not disclosed how many cubic meters of natural gas reached.

The pipeline, with a capacity of 160 million cubic meters per day, was transmitting 60-65 million cubic meters of gas before maintenance. Today, the daily flow is expected to reach 65 million cubic meters.

The European Union asked member states on Wednesday to reduce gas use by 15 percent by March as an urgent step after President Vladimir Putin warned that Russia’s natural gas shipments to Europe could further decrease or even stop.

Natural gas prices fall

The resumption of natural gas flow from Russia has also brought prices down in Europe.

The price of natural gas per megawatt hour decreased by 5.8 percent to 146 euros as of 09:18 today, compared to the previous closing.

The August gas futures contract price, traded at TTF, the Netherlands-based virtual natural gas trading point with the deepest depth in Europe, closed at 155 euros per megawatt hour yesterday.

Euro rebounds against dollar

The flow of natural gas also positively affected the euro, the currency of the European Union. The euro recovered against the dollar, hitting its highest level in the last two weeks. The euro, which appreciated by 0.42 percent, changed hands at $ 1,02215. After seeing the peak of $1,0273 on July 6, the euro rapidly depreciated and found the same value as the dollar. As of Wednesday, it has recovered most of this depreciation.

In addition to the resumption of natural gas flow to Europe, the interest rate decision of the European Central Bank (ECB), which was expected to be announced within the day, also played an important role in the appreciation of the Euro. 

Economists estimate that the ECB could raise interest rates by a significant 50 basis points. Concerns are observed in the markets that the ECB will keep the interest rate hike at 25 basis points instead of 50, with the aim of curbing the record-breaking inflation rates across Europe.

Kenta started his early career as a game developer, after working four years for an Dutch company, he stepped into web research and news technologies and became a web enthusiast, which made him start Amsterdamfox.com. Kenta loves animals and usually takes part in activities related to animal rights and welfare.

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Used car prices in the Netherlands fell for the first time this year

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Used car prices in the Netherlands fell for the first time this year. Data were obtained from the vehicle sales platform AutoScout24. According to the platform, the reason for the decrease is the summer holiday.

How much are used car prices in the Netherlands?

AutoScout24 stated that during the summer holidays, people’s interests are generally towards vacationing, so the decrease in prices may be due to this.
 
An average used car was sold for 23,531 euros in July. This rate is 1.2 percent less than the previous month. At the beginning of this year, the average price of second-hand was 22,158 euros. There has been no decline in used car prices since the spring of 2021.
 
On the other hand, the increase in second-hand items in other European countries continues. Prices continued to rise in France, Austria and Belgium last month, while Germany saw a small decline of 0.2 percent.
 
Germany is still at the top of Europe in this field, with an average used car price of 27,361 euros.
 
Image source: ipravda.sk

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Declining interest in Randstad region in the Netherlands

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Declining interest in Randstad region in the Netherlands

The proportion of people leaving the Randstad area in the Netherlands has increased over the past year. According to the National Statistics Agency (CBS), 75,000 people left the region last year. The number of people who moved to the region was 55 thousand.

 
CBS data indicated that those over the age of 30 are increasingly leaving the west of the country.
 
Statistics also show that the number of people leaving the Randstad area has increased since 2014. While 48 thousand people left the region in 2014, this number increased to 70 thousand in 2020.
 
On the other hand, the proportion of those who moved to Randstad remained roughly the same, reaching 55 thousand last year. Looking at all the data, the number of Dutch people giving up city life has been increasing since 2017.
 
However, the increase in the number of people leaving Randstad does not mean that the region is empty.

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Netherlands uses Europe’s most expensive natural gas

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The Netherlands became the country that used the most expensive natural gas among the European Union countries with its natural gas prices in July.

 
Nieuwsuur, which collects data from the comparison site Energievergelijk.nl, last month the natural gas bill of a house in the Netherlands cost 283 Euros. This rate is double that of many EU countries. Neighboring countries of the Netherlands are Germany and Belgium, a few of these countries.
 
In June, the peak of gas prices was in Sweden, while the Netherlands took the second place. In July, the leadership changed hands. Last month gas bills in Sweden averaged 237.
 
Electricity bills in the Netherlands are also quite high compared to other countries. The Dutch paid an average of 419 euros for electricity in July. There are only two European countries that face more electricity bills than the Netherlands: Italy and Denmark.
 
According to the estimates of Energievergelijk.nl, citizens who will renew their energy contracts this year will pay an average of 3,700 euros more per year.
 
Nibud, who is a budget consultant, stated that many households will have difficulty paying the bills in the future. Nearly 30 percent of them highlighted the difficulty ban on this issue last month.

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