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Niinistö: Fate of Fennovoima up to Russian brass

Green Party leader Ville Niinistö says he considers the Fennovoima nuclear power plant project to be completely ruled by Russian interests. Niinistö says that Finland should not undertake a construction project that is so tied up in Russian politics.

Ville Niinistö
Image: Yle

Former Minister of the Environment and current leader of the Greens Party, Ville Niinistö says that the Fennovoima nuclear project is very close to being scrapped. He says the current government exhibits weak leadership by allowing for more time for interested parties to safeguard the power plant's so-called domesticity requirement of 60 percent EU ownership.

"Fortum was given a chance to get in on the deal, even though Parliament called for ownership issues to be cleared by the end of June," Niinistö says. "The government is dragging its feet. This is a completely Russian operation and Finland shouldn't be involved."

Hydropower key?

Niinistö says he believes that Fortum's interest in the Fennovoima undertaking is strongly to do with its Russian interests.

"The snafu with Fortum coming in now is that the Fennovoima plant is not profitable. It isn't difficult to calculate. Fortum will only be on board if it secures a great hydroelectric deal in Russia," he told Yle.

And the success of such a deal still hinges on many ins and outs. Water power is stable, solid ownership and not something to give away easily, he says, and without a strong, political Russian intervention the current owner of the water interest is unlikely to sell.

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