Government leaders meet to dispel Terho's “crisis of confidence”
The chair of the cabinet’s junior partner said that a government crisis had been averted, but the other party chairs downplayed Wednesday’s talks.
Cabinet aims to boost employment, exports and security in next 2 years
The Finnish government has unveiled measures it says will raise the employment rate while maintaining fiscal discipline and beefing up security. The blueprint comes as the three-party coalition marks the midway point of its four-year legislative term. At least some new jobs will be opening up in the cabinet itself.
Finnish government to kickstart electric car market
The government aims to significantly boost sales of low-emissions cars. Yle has learned that the cabinet wants to earmark 100 million euros in subsidies for electric and biogas cars in an effort to bring hundreds of thousands of them onto the road in the next decade or so.
Finland pulls ambassador from Sweden over sexual harassment claims
Finland has recalled its ambassador to Sweden following allegations that he sexually harassed staff and guests at the Stockholm mission. The Foreign Ministry says Ambassador Jarmo Viinanen has been re-assigned to other duties.
Finnish PM foresees jobs growth – and cabinet reshuffle
Prime Minister Juha Sipilä said on Saturday that he expects the employment situation to improve next autumn. He said he will discuss possible changes within the cabinet on Monday with newly-elected NCP chair Petteri Orpo.
PM: Government offers half a billion in tax cuts
Prime Minister Juha Sipilä is pushing for a final agreement on the competitiveness deal with unions and employers on Friday. The cabinet offered some 515 million euros in conditional tax cuts on Thursday. The Taxpayers Association of Finland estimates that this might raise the average wage-earner's purchasing power by around five euros per month.
Government wants 230mn euros more for asylum seekers
The cabinet says more funds are needed to cover asylum seekers' costs, training in Iraq and home healthcare. A decision on more cash for the Talvivaara mine has been put off until next week.
Sipilä: No VR break-up discussed
Prime Minister Juha Sipilä told Yle Tuesday afternoon that the cabinet has not held discussions on breaking up the State Railways VR into smaller units. Earlier in the day, the newspaper Helsingin Sanomat, reported that Centre Party transport minister Anne Berner is pushing for the establishment of a company to take over ownership of VR's rolling stock .
Finland aims to expand training ops in Iraq
The Finnish government has proposed sending 50 additional soldiers to participate in an ongoing training operation in Iraq. The additional deployment will bring the number of military personnel serving in Iraq's Kurdistan Region to 100 by September.
Govt security chief to probe politicians' wiretapping claims
The cabinet’s chief of security says the administration will begin investigating claims of mobile phone eavesdropping by two politicians. The security boss was responding to reports by the Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet that former Defence Minister Carl Haglund and senior National Coalition MP Ilkka Kanerva may have been targets of wiretapping.
Sipilä urges unions: Extend working day by 20 minutes or drop holiday bonuses
“We were in the front lines of those advising the Greeks about what they should do. Now let’s take that advice into practise ourselves. We can’t allow ourselves to get into a situation where others would decide on our issues for us,” warned Finnish PM Sipilä in a rare televised address to the nation.
Global networks, low-price flats and less red tape: Ministers unveil spearhead projects
The government will spend 170 million euros on labour reform, boosting companies’ competitiveness and expanding construction of moderately-priced rental flats, ministers said on Friday.
Watch: Finland our natural EU ally, says UK finance minister
Both our countries want better value for money from European institutions, UK Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has told Yle. Speaking on a visit to Finland, he also brushed off comments made last year by his Finnish counterpart Alexander Stubb that Britain's rhetoric on Europe is "uncivilised".
PM: Efforts to reach labour market accord have failed
Juha Sipilä said he was “extremely disappointed” and that “every stone had been turned” in order to reach a broad consensus on how to boost productivity and avoid further austerity measures.
Greens' Niinistö: Other parties stuck in the 70s
In the latest of our pre-election interviews, we asked Green Party chair Ville Niinistö if Finland is really harking back to Finlandisation, if the Green Party is too quick to resign from government, and how he wants to create new jobs and boost the economy while still safeguarding the environment.
Russia raps Finland for Ukrainian laser exports
Russia has criticised the export of laser equipment from Finland to Ukraine after the cabinet last week granted an export license to a Finnish manufacturer of laser rangefinders.
Government survives eighth confidence vote
The current four-party coalition government of Finland still enjoys the majority of parliamentary representatives' confidence, after a 98 to 87 vote on Friday in Parliament. 14 MPs abstained.
Opposition MPs slam government high school cuts
During a motion of no confidence in Parliament on Wednesday, Education Minister Krista Kiuru was forced to defend the cabinet's plans to slash 260 million euros from its spending on high schools and vocational colleges.
Friday's papers: Women in gov't, Nokia's tablet, and those annoying FB status updates
The scarcity of women in EU governments, views on consensus, Nokia’s moves forward and annoying FB status updates were among the issues taken up in the Finnish newspaper press.
Christian Democrats: More sexual minority bills could jeopardise government coalition
The Christian Democratic Party says it won’t support any new proposals or draft legislation dealing with sexual minorities during the current government term. Christian Democratic chair Päivi Räsänen warned that bringing such measures to the Parliament could put the current government coalition on the line.
Government wants to sell on-order icebreaker
The government is ready to sell an icebreaker ordered for the Finnish Transport Agency which was intended to compete for business with the state-owned Arctia Shipping Company.
Left Alliance chair: Coalition party trio ideal but unrealistic
Left Alliance chair Paavo Arhinmäki admitted in an interview this morning that his party’s favourites for a government coalition would not stand up as a government. He also said that all parties should vie for government on principle.
Finnish government survives nerve-wracking confidence vote
The government squeaked through Friday’s vote of confidence, 97-94. If the opposition had succeeded in its aim of toppling the cabinet, it would have been the first time in 56 years.
Finland to probe whether dual citizenship poses a threat to national security
Ministers have called for an enquiry to determine whether civil servants with dual citizenship pose a threat to national security. The matter was discussed by the cabinet’s foreign and security policy committee Thursday.
Stubb: Nuclear reactor project still possible despite cabinet rejection
PM moves to restore confidence in the proposal for a fourth reactor at Olkiluoto, southwest Finland, despite the cabinet voting against allowing energy company TVO to make another application for a nuclear licence.
Gov't accepts Fennovoima changes--Greens leave cabinet
Finland's government has accepted changes to the application for a new nuclear power plant at Pyhäjoki in North Ostrobothnia. As a result the Green League--which had opposed the Fennovoima reactor project--announced their resignation from the cabinet.
Green walkout would prompt early election, opposition claims
Alexander Stubb's government would be unable to push through vital reforms without the Green League to boost its majority, the leaders of the three main opposition parties insisted on Wednesday. The Greens have threatened to quit the cabinet if a new nuclear power station is given the go-ahead on Thursday.
SDP wants more time to consider TVO nuclear bid
Social Democratic Party chair Antti Rinne wants more time to make a decision about the energy company TVO’s revised application for a nuclear power permit, reports Finnish commercial broadcaster MTV. The cabinet is to decide on Thursday whether to grant a permit for a separate reactor project by the Fennovoima consortium.
Greens to quit Finnish government if it approves new nuclear plant
Greens chair Ville Niinistö announced on Monday that his party will leave the Stubb cabinet if it approves a new Russian-built Fennovoima nuclear power plant on Thursday.
Stubb rules out corporation tax abolition
Prime Minister Alexander Stubb has ruled out a zero rate of corporation tax proposed by a business mogul who relocated to Sweden, claiming taxes in Finland are too high. In his monthly interview hour on Yle Radio Prime Minister Stubb also denied there are splits in the cabinet over Ukraine.
President: It was me who ordered dual-citizenship rethink
The Interior Ministry announced on Thursday it will begin exploring the possibility of tightening citizenship eligibility criteria or outlawing dual nationality altogether, following a surge in the number of Russians being granted Finnish citizenship.
Rinne hammers out budget details with fellow ministers
The finance minister, who has been in office for less than two months, faces tough talks over funding for education, the justice system, police and defence forces as he finalises next year’s state budget.
Friday's papers: Budget tensions and Russian sanctions
Proposals for next year’s state budget by Finance Minister Antti Rinne have created new tensions within the cabinet at the same time as Finland is taking a hard look at how Russian economic sanctions on the West are likely to impact a number of different sectors.
Finance minister releases draft budget proposal: Focus on domestic growth
Measures include putting 88 million euros into transport projects; a 10-euro increase per month for those with the smallest pensions; and tax reductions for lower and middle income families with children.
Speaker: Parliament was sidelined in sanctions decision
Eero Heinäluoma has criticised the cabinet for not keeping MPs sufficiently informed about the discussion over economic restrictions on Russia, claiming that the economic effects of the sanctions cannot have been properly assessed.
Customs missile info reached cabinet office – but not high command
Finnish Customs informed the cabinet office about the Ukraine-bound intercepted missile container, but the news still did not reach Finland’s highest-ranking members of government. The confiscation occurred at the end of June, but Customs announced the incident to the country’s high command only last week.
Britannian ulkoministeri vaihtuu – William Hague astuu syrjään
Willian Hague luopuu ulkoministerin pestistä aloittaakseen parlamentin alahuoneen johtajana. Haguen siirto on osa konservatiivien ministerikierrätystä.