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HFC refrigerant prices stabilise

The development of purchase prices of lower GWP alternatives as reported by 26 service companies

EUROPE: Prices of HFC refrigerants in Europe stabilised in the first quarter of this year, but the low GWP HFO R1234yf declined in price for the first time.

The figures are included in the latest report produced on behalf of the European Commission by German consultancy Öko-Recherche.

Prices for R134a, R407C, R410A and R404A are said to have remained at a level comparable to the end of 2019. This also applied to most lower GWP alternatives except R1234yf, now used in all new motor vehicles, which saw a price drop for the first time.

This stabilisation of prices follows a series of price drops in 2019 from the extreme high prices of 2018, brought on by the imposition of the European F-gas phase down.

The Q1 report also reveals that the service ban on the use of virgin HFCs with a GWP of 2500 or more for large refrigeration systems that became effective on January 1, has brought reports of “significant” price rises for reclaimed gas. This applies in particularly to R404A, but also R422D and R507. The reported average purchase price of reclaimed R404A was reported to be similar to virgin R404A at around €35.00/kg).

While the report only covers the early stages of Covid-19 lockdowns, no problems were reported with refrigerant supplies from China, with only minor delays in the EU.

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