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Finland’s Energy Firm Gasum to Halt Russian LNG Imports amid EU Sanctions

Finland’s energy company Gasum will stop buying or importing Russian liquefied natural gas from July 26, in line with a clause with the fresh EU sanctions on Russia, which includes sanctions targeting LNG.

The European Union adopted on Monday a new sanctions package against Russia, targeting Russian LNG projects and shipments for the first time and looking to curb Moscow’s use of the so-called dark fleet to circumvent the price caps on Russian crude and oil products.

The EU member states approved this week the 14th package of sanctions against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.

The EU will prohibit reloading services of Russian LNG in EU territory for the purpose of transshipment operations to third countries, after a transition period of 9 months. This covers both ship-to-ship transfers and ship-to-shore transfers, as well as re-loading operations, and does not affect import but only re-export to third countries via the EU, the bloc said.

To further try to restrict Russian LNG revenues, the EU also agreed to prohibit new investments, as well as the provision of goods, technology, and services for the completion of LNG projects under construction, such as Arctic LNG 2 and Murmansk LNG.

Moreover, the package now bans – effective July 26 – the import of Russian LNG into specific import terminals that are not connected to the EU gas pipeline network. This will affect off-network terminals in Finland and Sweden, said Finland, which has pushed for such a measure together with its Scandinavian neighbor.

Finland’s Gasum said in a statement on Tuesday that “The sanctions adopted by the EU do not allow Gasum to terminate its agreement with Gazprom export, but constitute a force majeure on the purchase or import of Russian LNG to off-grid terminals.”

“Gasum complies with all sanctions imposed by the EU and will not purchase or import Russian LNG as of 26 July,” the company said.

By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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