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Gazprom’s announcement on Tuesday that it would suspend natural gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria It is not likely to have a major impact on the global European gas market, analysts say. But it comes as a warning that further and more serious cuts in fuel from Russia may be in the offing as the war in Ukraine continues.

The move “increases the risk of other early terminations for other European contracts,” Giacomo Romeo, an analyst at Jefferies, an investment bank, wrote in a comment.

The cutoff is the first suspension of supplies to European countries since the start of the war in Ukraine in late February. Gazprom, the Russian gas monopoly, said in a statement that it was acting because Bulgarian and Polish gas companies had not met President Vladimir V. Putin’s demands to pay for gas supplied since April 1 in Russian rubles.

For Europe, the gas outage comes at a good time, if it exists. With spring weather getting warmer, gas consumption, which increases in winter, is declining, easing some of the pressure that has kept prices high for months.

In a note to clients on Tuesday, analysts at Goldman Sachs said they expected the Russian cuts “would have only a modest physical impact” on supply and demand balances in the key Northwest European market.

Despite such assurances, the Russian move on Wednesday led to a rise in European natural gas futures prices: they opened more than 20% higher on the Dutch exchange TTF, at 125 euros (about $ 133) per megawatt hour. Prices fell in the late morning.

Poland will most likely be sidelined from the Russian cutoff in the coming months. It has withdrawn only modest quantities of gas from Russia through the Yamal pipeline, which Gazprom is shutting down this year. Indeed, the pipeline has often worked the other way around, bringing gas from storage in Germany to Poland.

Unlike other European nations, Poland has worked for at least a decade to avoid being held hostage by Moscow for energy reasons. This preparation means Warsaw has other options for obtaining gas, including a liquefied natural gas terminal that the country has built to reduce its dependence on Russian gas. The facility allows Poland to import fuel from suppliers such as Qatar and the United States. Furthermore, a new pipeline that will carry gas from Norway to the Baltic Sea is expected to be operational by the end of the year.

Poland has also injected gas into storage facilities which are now over 75% full, more than double the European average.

In a statement on Wednesday, PGNiG, the dominant Polish energy company, said it had “various possibilities of obtaining” gas, including from Germany and the Czech Republic.

PGNiG said that by cutting off gas flows, Gazprom was in breach of its contract. The Polish company said that “after a thorough analysis” it had decided that the payment in rubles was not consistent with the terms of its contract.

Bulgaria also claims that it has fulfilled its legal obligations and that gas is being used “more as a political and economic weapon in the current war,” said its Energy Minister, Alexander Nikolov. Although heavily dependent on Russian gas, Bulgaria is a minnow in terms of overall European fuel consumption, analysts say.

The cut could include other, more damaging fuel cuts if the war continues and if customers like Germany, Russia’s largest gas importer, do not negotiate a solution to the Kremlin’s demands for ruble payments.

“It is in the interests of both the EU and Russia to find a solution,” Goldman analysts wrote, warning that a wider gas suspension could lead to “a significant economic toll”.