Finland halts natural gas imports from Russia

Copenhagen (Denmark), May 20 (AP) Finnish state-owned energy company Gasum says natural gas imports from Russia will be halted on Saturday, after the Finns refused to pay for it in rubles.

Russia demanded payment in rubles after sanctions were imposed against Moscow over the invasion of Ukraine in February.

Gasum’s CEO Mika Wiljanen called it highly regrettable that the gas supplies will now be stopped.

But there will be no disruptions in the gas supply network , he said in a statement.

The group was informed by Russian state-owned energy giant Gazprom in April that future payments in the supply contract must be made in Russian currency instead of euros.

In Finland, natural gas accounted for six per cent of the total energy consumption in 2020, Finnish broadcaster YLE said.

Almost all gas is imported from Russia and last year the share of Russian natural gas imports was 92 per cent.

Poland and Bulgaria, which also have refused to pay Gazprom in rubles, have had their gas cut off. (AP)