Russia said it will cut power to Finland from Saturday as it claims the country failed to pay, a state-owned energy company said.
RAO Nordic, a subsidiary of Inter ROA, said it would halt exports of electricity to Finland, without giving details, amid heightened tensions across Europe ravaged by the Russia-Ukraine war, Reuters reported.
“This situation is extraordinary and happening for the first time in over twenty years of our trading history,” RAO Nordic said in a statement, according to the report.
RUSSIA WANT TO CUT GAS SUPPLIES TO FINLAND AT NATO’S REQUEST
Electricity supply, which accounts for 10% of the country’s total consumption, was shut down “for the time being” at 1 a.m. local time, according to the report, Finnish grid operator Fingrid said.
“Lack of imports can be replaced in the power market by importing more power from Sweden and also by domestic production,” the company added, Reuters reported.
According to the report, Fingrid is not involved in the dispute.
“Nord Pool is the one who pays for them. Fingerrid is not involved in this electricity trade. We provide the transmission link from Russia to Finland,” Reima Paivinen, senior vice president of operations at Fingrid, told the outlet.
The EU accuses Russia of ‘blackmail’ after cutting off gas to Poland and Bulgaria
The discrepancy in suspended payments could be linked to earlier calls by Russian President Vladimir Putin for countries to pay gas fees in rubles, Russia’s national currency.
The demand came as Russia faces tightened international economic sanctions.
The Finnish government said last month it would not pay for Russian gas supplies in rubles.
Nord Pool did not confirm the ruble requirement, saying: “We have never had settlements in rubles, only in euros, Norwegian kroner, Swedish kronor and Danish kroner according to our standard procedures.”
The Kremlin calls Finland’s NATO movement a threat to Russia
Finland, which has traditionally remained neutral, has attempted to join NATO, further escalating tensions with Russia.
On Thursday, Finnish President Sauli Niinisto and Prime Minister Sanna Marin said their country is aiming to join NATO “immediately”.
“NATO membership would strengthen Finland’s security. As a member of NATO, Finland would strengthen the overall defense alliance,” the leaders said.
Fox Business’ Caitlin McFall contributed to this report.