Russia halted natural gas exports to Finland on Saturday, according to a statement from Finnish state-owned energy firm Gasum.
“It is highly regrettable that natural gas supplies under our supply contract will now be halted,” Gasum CEO Mika Wiljanen said.
The company had been preparing for such a situation and there would be no disruptions to its transmissions network, or gas supply in the coming months, he added.
Gasum will revert to gas supplies from other sources to service its filling stations, the statement said.
Russian state media outlet TASS confirmed the export halt, citing “non-payment” as the reason for Russian firm Gazprom’s decision to cut supplies.
Russian energy in Europe: Gazprom has continued to demand European countries pay for Russian gas in rubles, after Russian President Vladimir Putin said in March that “unfriendly” foreign nations would have their supplies cut if they didn't make the currency switch.
In a statement Tuesday, Gasum rejected the proposed rubles payment scheme and said it would take Gazprom to arbitration over the issue.
NATO bid: Finland on Sunday formally announced its intention to join NATO, ditching decades of neutrality and ignoring Russian threats of possible retaliation in a bid to strengthen its security following the onset of the war in Ukraine.
Finland relied on Russia for nearly 68% of its natural gas consumption in 2020, according to the International Energy Agency.
But Russia’s gas exports account for just 3% of the Nordic nation’s total energy mix — which includes energy generated from biofuels and nuclear sources — according to data from Eurostat and the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Gas.