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Russia suspends gas supplies to Finland on Saturday

Russia suspends gas supplies to Finland on Saturday

Russia's Gazprom has informed Finland that it will cut off natural gas supplies from Saturday morning, May 21, Finnish state gas seller Gasum announced on Friday.

Gasum refused to pay Gazprom in rubles, which Russia has demanded from European countries.

"It is very unfortunate that natural gas supplies under our supply contract will now be suspended," said Gasum executive director Mika Vilanen.

"However, we have been carefully prepared for this situation and provided there is no interruption in the network, we will be able to supply gas to all our customers in the coming months," he said.

Gasum announced that it will continue to send gas to customers from other sources, through the Balticconnector gas pipeline connecting Finland with Estonia.

Gasum warned on Wednesday that Russia could cut off gas supplies due to a dispute over payment in rubles.

Most of the gas used in Finland comes from Russia, but gas accounts for only about 5 percent of its annual energy consumption.

Gazprom did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Earlier on Friday, before announcing Gasum, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Moscow had no detailed information about Gazprom's supply contracts.

"But, of course, nothing will be sent to anyone for free," Peskov added.

Due to the possibility of gas depletion, large Finnish companies such as Neste, Mets and others, are looking for alternative energy sources or emergency plans to adjust their production.

Forestry group Stora Enso announced that it has already replaced Russian natural gas with liquefied natural gas (LNG) in all its units.

The UPM company stated that it uses the gas delivered through the Balticconnector pipeline by Western suppliers, but is still preparing for the possibility of short-term disruption.

Russia has previously suspended gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria, which have refused to pay in rubles.

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