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Finnish companies pull out of Russia as Ukraine conflict continues to shake stock markets

Russia has said it will temporarily prevent foreign investors from selling Russian assets.

OP Ryhmän pääkonttorilla seurataan pörssikurssien kehitystä, tässä öljyn hinta laskee.
European financial markets continued to dip on Tuesday. Image: Katriina Laine / Yle
Yle News

Multiple Finnish companies have suspended operations in Russia following the country's invasion of Ukraine.

Nokia announced on Tuesday that it would stop deliveries to Russia. According to a report by Reuters, the Finnish telecoms company said that the move was a means of complying with sanctions imposed on the country.

The City of Helsinki-owned energy firm Helen has also said that it will stop sourcing coal from Russia "due to the geopolitical situation."

The company is reportedly preparing for the impact that sanctions will have on the supply of gas, coal, oil and energy imports.

"Our energy procurement is safeguarded in terms of the rest of the winter and the spring and summer. For the winter period of 2022–2023, we will [be] implementing new heat production methods, such as the Vuosaari bioenergy heating plant and the seventh heat pump for Katri Vala," the company stated in a press release.

According to a report by STT, Finland's state-owned rail operator VR has decided to cease all communications with Russian Railways (RZD), barring essential information related to cross-border traffic.

At the request of authorities, the rail carrier will continue operating its Allegro train to enable Finnish citizens to return home from Russia and to grant safe passage for Russians seeking to leave Russia.

VR will allow passengers who hold a Ukrainian passport to travel free of cost on trains in Finland during March. Finnish bus operator OnniBus has also said it will offer free travel to Ukrainian asylum seekers in March.

Russia announced on Tuesday that it will temporarily ban foreign investors from selling Russian assets. This means that Western companies, which are currently rushing to exit investments, will be unable to cut ties with the country.

According to Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin, the government wants investors to be able to make informed decisions based on economic considerations, as current decisions are being made "under political pressure."

European financial markets continue to fall as a result of the new sanctions, with the London, Frankfurt and Paris stock exchanges dipping about three percent on Tuesday afternoon.

The OMX HEX25 stock market index also indicated a 3 percent drop in the Helsinki stock exchange. Oil prices soared to over 100 dollars a barrel on Tuesday afternoon.

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