According to the Finnish energy company Gasum, Russia stopped supplying gas to Finland early on Saturday morning. The Finnish utility Gasum announced in Espoo that Gazprom Export informed about this on Friday afternoon.
The Finnish group had previously announced that it would not accept Gazprom Export’s demands for payments to be made in rubles. The two companies also disagree on other demands.
“It is deeply regrettable that the gas deliveries from our contract are now being stopped,” said Gasum boss Mika Wiljanen, according to the announcement. “However, we have carefully prepared for this situation, and if there are no disruptions in the gas network, we will be able to supply all our customers with gas in the coming months.” Gas from the natural gas pipeline Balticconnector will be made available to customers throughout the summer , it was said.
Gas accounts for only about five percent of the energy mix in Finland, according to Finnish Broadcasting Corporation. However, almost all of the gas comes from Russia: last year, the share of Russian gas imports was 92 percent. According to Gasum, it is currently the only energy company in Finland that purchases gas directly from Russia.
According to the Federal Ministry of Economics and the Federal Network Agency, the delivery stop for Finland has no impact on the gas supply in Germany. The ministry is observing the situation very closely and is in contact with Finnish and European partners on request. “The gas supply in Germany is stable,” says the current management report of the Federal Network Agency, the security of supply is guaranteed.
For Finland, the Russian gas stop is “no reason to panic,” wrote the Finland expert Minna Ålander from the Science and Politics Foundation on Twitter on Friday. “Even in the chemical industry, forestry and bakeries, which are some of the largest consumers of natural gas, it doesn’t seem to be a problem.”
Jukka Leskelä, the chairwoman of the Finnish energy industry association, does not initially expect any supply problems in the summer. “There is still a lot of time until autumn and winter. The situation has changed a lot,” Leskelä told Finnish news agency STT. “Many companies have already taken safety precautions and are looking for alternatives to Russian gas.” One such alternative could be the liquid gas terminal that the Finns are leasing together with Estonia and want to operate from autumn.
Against the background of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine, Finland and Sweden submitted an application for NATO membership in Brussels on Wednesday. Russia had already announced a response. However, it is not clear whether there is a connection with the energy freeze. Russia also no longer supplies gas to Poland and Bulgaria.
Last Friday, the Helsinki-based Russian company Rao Nordic announced at short notice that it would stop supplying electricity to Finland. The reason for this is a non-payment.