(Bloomberg) -- Much of Northern Europe faces freezing temperatures through the next 10 days, lifting sluggish demand for natural gas and testing the region’s energy infrastructure.

The forecast has turned colder for a range of countries, including the region’s biggest gas user Germany, according to Maxar Technologies Inc. The minimum temperature in Berlin will drop below freezing from Saturday through to the end of the forecast period. Helsinki will be 9C below the seasonal norm over the weekend.

The north and northeast of the UK may experience wintry showers on Friday, with an increasing chances of “more general snow towards the turn of the month,” the Met Office said. 

The cold snap, which is expected to last through the first week of December, comes after a mild autumn that left the region’s gas inventories largely untapped. Confidence is rising that Europe will pass the winter season comfortably, unless there are major disruptions to supply. 

Storm Alexis will bring unsettled weather to southern Europe over the next few days and the risk of snow and ice further north, the UK’s Met Office said. Heavy snow is expected over parts of the Alps during the weekend.

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