THE HAGUE: Russia’s Gazprom will halt gas supplies to the Netherlands’ partly state-owned energy firm GasTerra on Tuesday after it refused to pay in rubles following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Dutch company said.
Moscow has asked clients from “unfriendly countries” — including EU member states — to pay for gas in rubles, a way to sidestep Western financial sanctions against its central bank over the Feb. 24 offensive.
GasTerra had “decided not to comply with Gazprom’s unilateral payment requirements” as they would breach EU sanctions and create “financial and operational risks,” the Dutch firm said in a statement Monday.
“In response to this decision by GasTerra, Gazprom has announced that it will discontinue supply with effect from May 31, 2022,” it said.
The Russian energy giant’s move means that 2 billion cubic meters of gas will not be supplied to the Netherlands between now and October, GasTerra said, adding that it “has anticipated this by purchasing gas elsewhere.
“GasTerra has repeatedly urged Gazprom to respect the contractually agreed payment structure and delivery obligations, unfortunately to no avail,” it said.
The Dutch state directly owns a 10 percent stake in GasTerra plus another 40 percent through state-owned gas firm EBN. The rest is owned by energy giants Shell and Esso.
The Dutch government said it “understands” GasTerra’s decision.
“This decision has no consequences for the physical supply of gas to Dutch households,” Climate and Energy Minister Rob Jetten said on Twitter.