The market price of electricity and crude oil fell sharply during the first quarter of the year, Statistics Finland says in its release. Consumer prices for petroleum products also fell and the rise in consumer prices for electricity came to a halt.

Demand weakened by the coronavirus pandemic weighed on world crude oil prices in the early part of the year and barrel prices more than halved in March.

The decline in the market price was reflected in consumer prices of petroleum products. According to Statistics Finland, the price of motor gasoline was three per cent lower in March than a year earlier. The price of diesel fell by 10 per cent from the previous year. The price of light fuel oil fell 23 percent.

The tax-free price of coal began to decline last summer and continued to decline in the first quarter of this year. In the first quarter of the year, the tax-free price of coal was about 30 per cent lower than a year earlier, Statistics Finland says.

Domestic fuel prices also continued to rise in the first quarter of this year. The price of forest chips rose by six per cent from last year. Milled peat became more expensive by about one percent.

According to Statistics Finland, the system price derived from the buying and selling offers of the Nordic power exchange fell exceptionally much during the spring. The last time the system price was equally low was in 1998 and 1999.