Nammo, an ammo manufacturer co-owned by the Norwegian government and a Finnish defense company, told the press that it would be able to reach its production targets, in order to meet increasing demands for its artillery shells. The reason why it would fall short? Because of a TikTok data centre within its region.

According to Morten Brandtzæg, Nammo’s chief executive, in an interview with the Financial Times (paywall), the heavy arms and ammo production company says that the reason it believes it will fall short of its demand quota is because a TikTok datacentre in the region, is said to be hogging all of the electricity within the area. Elvia, the local energy provider in Norway, says that because of the datacentre power draw, it actually has no additional electricity to spare to the plant. Especially since it works on a first come, first serve basis.

There is another extenuating factor which Brandtzæg isn’t fully addressing, but isn’t pushing to the side either, and that is whether China currently has had a hand in influencing ByteDance, the parent company of TikTok, to undermine Nammo’s production capabilities. “I will not rule out that it’s not by pure coincidence that this activity is close to a defense company,” Brandtzæg said. “I can’t rule it out.” It also doesn’t help that the social media platform already has plans for more datacentres to be set up in Norway, seeing how the country offers cheap electricity as well as a naturally colder climate, which makes it the ideal place for building such infrastructures and reducing cooling costs.

As to where the increased demand for Nammo artillery shells are coming from, you probably would’ve already guessed it: Ukraine. The ongoing war with neighbouring Russia means that the country wishes to increases its daily number of artillery rounds fired from 6000 shells to 65000 shells, to properly counteract against Russian forces. For the Norwegian company, that demand is 15 times higher than what its average demand and output was, prior to the war. “We are concerned because we see our future growth is challenged by the storage of cat videos.”

The TikTok datacentre that is expected to be completed in Norway this year (Image source: Techspot.).

It’s also clear that TikTok just can’t catch a break. Ever since it the video sharing platform was singled out by the Trump administration, the company has been trapped in a whirlpool of accusations and scandals, all within the US. As of late, the current Biden administration has given the company an ultimatum: divest its US business and segment of the business to other American businesses, or risk getting the banhammer and losing more than 100 million US users.

(Source: Techspot, The Register, Guardian)

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