PM Marin draws attention as leader of "happiest nation"

Finland continues to spark curiosity for its top spot on the world happiness index.

Prime Minister Sanna Marin (SDP) pictured in Oulu in November 2021. Image: Timo Heikkala / Lehtikuva

Prime Minister Sanna Marin (SDP) told British newspaper The Guardian (siirryt toiseen palveluun) on Sunday that equality, education and the welfare state had propelled Finland to the top of a global happiness ranking four years in a row.

"We have always worked for equality in Finland, and I think it's also important in the future, and not only the equality of men and women, or the genders, but also the equality of minority groups in society," Marin was quoted as saying.

A different survey conducted this summer, however, suggests that one in five Finns is unhappy, up from 17 percent in 2016.

Like many other (siirryt toiseen palveluun) international media outlets, The Guardian traces Marin's ascension to one of the country's most powerful posts.

But the newspaper also suggests that "cracks within her five-party coalition are beginning to show," quoting a recent Yle party support poll showing her Social Democrats dropping to third spot, trailing the National Coalition Party and Finns Party.

The Guardian highlights Marin's government facing a confidence vote on border security over the possible threat of a hybrid operation at Finland's borders.

When asked about Belarus' hybrid attack, the PM said, "there was no problem at the Finnish border," adding that Finland condemns Belarus' actions.

British politicians have meanwhile taken notice of Finland's aim to eliminate street homelessness by 2027, according to The Guardian.

"There are still people without homes, and we still have problems, especially in the bigger cities. But we have also made progress," she told the paper.