Russia’s Gazprom said on Wednesday that its gas exports to countries outside the former Soviet Union had fallen by more than a quarter year-on-year between January and May after losing several European clients.
Exports to countries outside the region totaled 61 billion cubic meters, down 27.6 percent from the same period last year, the energy giant said in a statement.
Gazprom added that gas supplies to China through the “Power of Siberia” pipeline were increasing, but did not provide any figures.
Since Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops to Ukraine on February 24, Moscow has demanded that “non-friendly countries” – including EU member states – pay customers for their gas in rubles.
The new requirement is seen as a way to circumvent Western financial sanctions imposed on Russia’s central bank over Moscow’s attack on Ukraine.
So far, Poland, Bulgaria, Finland and the Netherlands have suspended their natural gas supplies due to refusal to pay in rubles.
EU countries have vowed to reduce their dependence on Russian energy, but are divided over the imposition of natural gas sanctions because several member states are heavily dependent on Moscow’s energy supplies.
(This story was not edited by NDTV staff and was automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)