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Gasum still importing Russian LNG through Pori, seeks alternative supplies

Finland's state-owned energy company Gasum justifies the continued importation of Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG) on the basis of fulfilling long-term supply contracts.

The route of LNG tankers from Russia to the Gulf of Finland. Image: Asmo Raimoaho / Yle © Mapcreator.io | OSM.org

Finland's state-owned energy company Gasum is the largest distributor of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the Nordic countries, with a terminal network in Finland, Sweden and Norway.

The company is still importing LNG from Russia, even though many other Finnish firms have ceased operations with Finland's eastern neighbour due to Russia's invasion of and ongoing war in Ukraine.

"Most of our LNG already comes from outside Russia. We have been diversifying our procurement for years," Gasum's Vice President of Communications and Sustainability Olga Väisänen told Yle.

Gasum also imports LNG from Russia into Finland via tankers through the Pori terminal on the west coast of the country.

If there is a disruption in the supply of pipeline gas in the future, Pori will be a key strategic hub for any continuation of gas imports.

"If, for example, there were supply disruptions in the importing of pipeline gas, the logistical importance of LNG terminals would increase," Väisänen added.

Gasum will not however be able to import the same volumes of LNG through the terminals, as pipeline volumes are much higher.

Previously one LNG tanker arrived at the Pori terminal every two months, while two tankers arrived at the Tornio terminal every month.

Gas "most difficult" to replace

Gasum's clients mainly operate in the industrial, shipping and heavy transport sectors.

Väisänen noted that long before Russia invaded Ukraine, Gasum had deepened its cooperation with Central European operators, among others.

"This is a normal part of business. It is good to have many sourcing channels so that we can get gas to our customers in a competitive way," she said.

Gasum justifies the continued importation of LNG from Russia on the basis of fulfilling long-term supply contracts.

Energy is a huge issue for the whole of Europe, especially under the current circumstances.

"Gas is the most difficult to replace," Väisänen said.

She further noted that sanctions and restrictions can change very quickly.

"Of course, we are constantly monitoring the sanctions imposed by the European Union or at the local level. They are not yet available for LNG," Väisänen added.