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The Power import in France (2017 - 2020, GWh)

  • The Power import in France reached 18,838 GWh in 2020

  • The indicator recorded a historical decline at a CAGR of 3.76% between 2017 to 2020

The Power import in France (2017 - 2020, GWh)

Published: November 2021
Source: GlobalData

Why did power import in France grow in 2020?

France is one of the largest exporters of electricity in Europe, exporting power to Italy, Switzerland, Spain, Belgium, and the UK. France imports electricity from Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Spain, and Italy. Electricity exports have increased for the past few years owing to a decrease in consumption and a simultaneous increase in power generation.

Electricity imports increased rapidly from 2000 to 2020. This increase was largely due to rising demand for electricity, coupled with the declining efficiency of old nuclear reactors. The years 2009 and 2010 saw a substantial increase in annual imports due to reduced electricity generation from hydropower sources. 2017 saw the highest electricity imports as hydropower generation declined sharply due to droughts in the country.

Impact of COVID-19

France was one of the worst hit countries in the European Union due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To curb the spread of COVID-19, the French government imposed strict national lockdowns in the country with only essential services being operational.

Due to the national lockdowns, industries and commercial establishments in the country were temporarily shut down in 2020. This resulted in a significant decline in electricity demand. In 2020, the electricity consumption declined as compared to 2019. Electricite de France SA (EDF), one of the biggest utilities in the French power market, witnessed slowdown in construction and maintenance of its nuclear power plant fleet. The company also warned of further delays in the commissioning of its under construction nuclear power plant due to logistical delays in the supply chain owing to the pandemic. Annual power generation also declined in 2020 as compared to 2019. Due to reduced electricity demand, companies operating in the French power sector including EDF, and Engie SA reported a steep fall in revenues in 2020.

Electricity Trading

France is actively engaged in electricity trading, which takes place through the stock exchange, brokered mutual agreement, or direct mutual agreement. The stock exchange for spot products is the Epex Spot France, while for future products it is the European Energy Exchange. The country frequently undertakes electricity trading with Germany and Switzerland. Electricity trading in France is monitored by the Energy Regulatory Commission.

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