How has COVID-19 impacted Energy Demand and the Energy Markets?

  • The nationwide COVID-19 related restrictions, which commenced mid-March 2020, has resulted in reduced Q1 operational energy demand2 in the NEM, although it has not materially affected average quarterly results. AEMO estimates a small reduction (approx. 3-4%) in NSW and southern QLD operational demand in late March.
  • Electricity futures contracts traded on the ASX for Q2 and Q3 2020 fell 11% in the last two weeks of March as the potential impact on future electricity demand became evident.
  • In March 2020, international oil prices crashed to their lowest levels since 2003, due to the combined impacts of the Saudi Arabia-Russia oil price war and COVID-19-related demand reductions.
  • Asian Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) prices3 decreased from $7.12/GJ at the end of 2019 to reach $4.44/GJ by 31 March 2020, due to a combination of an already oversupplied market and the escalating impact of COVID-19 on global demand.


1 Source: AEMO Quarterly Energy Dynamics Q1 2020 – Market Insights Report

2 Operational demand refers to the electricity used by residential, commercial, and large industrial consumers, as supplied by scheduled, semi-scheduled, and significant non-scheduled generating units

3 Based on the Japan/Korea Marker (JKM) and converted from US$/MMBtu to A$/GJ

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