- Sputnik International, 1920
Energy Crisis in Europe
Europe is bracing for tough winter as US-led push to “punish” Moscow for its military operation in Ukraine backfired on the EU, which has faced months of skyrocketing energy prices and rising inflation after Brussels joined Washington in attempting to “phase out” Russian oil, coal and gas.

Finnish Food Prices Hit Record Highs as Economy Tightens

© AP Photo / Gyorgy VargaCustomers buy in the Tesco supermarket in Nagykanizsa 208 kms southwest of Budapest, Hungary
Customers buy in the Tesco supermarket in Nagykanizsa 208 kms southwest of Budapest, Hungary - Sputnik International, 1920, 18.11.2022
Finland’s worsening cost-of-living and energy crises, which are largely on a par with the eurozone, have been aggravated by Helsinki’s self-crippling sanctions against Russian energy. As gas and electricity runs short, Finnish authorities have even warned about the danger of rolling power cuts this winter.
Food prices in Finland have soared by almost 16 percent year-on-year in October, hitting a record high during the Nordic country’s entire time in the European Union.
The acceleration is unprecedented since the energy crisis of the Seventies and marks a continued rise from 14.5 percent in September and 12.5 percent in October.
The spike was most pronounced in flour, eggs, coffee and butter. Flour has risen in price by 46 percent, and the rest have risen by more than 30 percent. During the whole of October, pears were reported to be the only product actually to fall in value.
According to forecasts by the Pellervo Institute of Economic Research, the annual rise in food will eventually reach 11 percent.
Experts argued that the rapid inflation spike is unlikely to be stopped in November, December or even early 2023, as food and electricity will continue to appreciate for several months to come, with no signs of a slowdown in sight and more chronic drivers of inflation now in play.
According to Statistics Finland, consumer price increases accelerated last month, mostly as a result of surges in energy prices, diesel and petrol prices and the average interest rate on housing loans.
Amid galloping inflation, higher borrowing costs kicked in and reduced activity, Finland’s economy contracted in the third quarter by 0.1 percent, Statistics Finland said, with recession looming next year.
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At the same time Finland’s growing cost-of-living crisis, which largely mirrors that of the eurozone, has been exacerbated by Helsinki’s self-crippling sanctions against Russian energy. Amid shortages of gas and electricity, Finland is bracing itself for rolling power cuts this winter.
Helsinki also made a public case of its refusal to comply with Moscow's demands to pay for gas in rubles, with a number of politicians claiming that the conflict in Ukraine, in which Finland firmly supports Kiev with arms, training and assistance, made cooperation with Russia impossible. However, in subsequent months Helsinki had no qualms about buying Russian gas in liquefied form. This week, it transpired that Finland’s import of Russian nickel increased since the start of the Ukraine conflict. In September, the imports grew by a whopping 59 percent.
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Energy Crisis in Europe
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Pressed over this obvious discrepancy, the Finnish government said it was prepared to ramp up sanctions against Russia further. Among others, Finland's Minister for European Affairs Tytti Tuppurainen said the Nordic country was ready to “sanction everything”, if the EU were to reach a consensus.
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