Russia could cut gas supply to Finland on Friday -newspaper

A model of the natural gas pipeline is seen in front of displayed Finnish and Russian flag colors in this illustration taken April 26, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

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HELSINKI, May 12 (Reuters) – Key Finnish politicians have been warned that Russia could halt its gas supplies to neighboring Finland on Friday, local newspaper Iltalehti reported on Thursday, citing unnamed sources.

The paper did not specify where the warning would have come from and Reuters was not able to verify the information.

Finland’s President Sauli Niinisto and Prime Minister Sanna Marin on Thursday said Finland would apply to join the Western defense alliance NATO “without delay”, prompting Russia to vow a response. read more

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The majority of gas used in Finland comes from Russia but gas only accounts for some 5% of the country’s annual energy consumption. read more

However losing most of the gas supply would mean industry giants like Neste (NESTE.HE) and Metsa (METSB.HE) and also other companies in forestry, chemical and food industries would need to find alternative energy sources or adapt their production.

On May 5, the Finnish government said it was prepared for the possibility of its eastern neighbor cutting off gas delivery in late May as a response to Finland’s refusal to abide by Russian demands for gas payments to be made in rubles. read more

With direct pipeline connections with Russia, Finland and the Baltics are more reliant on Russian gas than other European countries. If Russian gas supply is reduced or cut, Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania might have to curtail demand, European gas operator network ENTSOG said in their summer outlook in April.

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Reporting by Anne Kauranen and Essi Lehto; Editing by Toby Chopra and Marguerita Choy

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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