Back on the job after a period of sick leave, Centre Party leader Juha Sipilä said that negative fallout from sanctions imposed on Russia could portend a third year of negative economic growth for Finland.
Speaking in an interview with Yle’s Aamu-tv breakfast programme, Sipilä noted that even Germany had not been keen on imposing sanctions against Russia for its perceived interference in Ukraine and Crimea. He noted that Germany also has considerable business interests in Russia.
Sipilä said he hoped that that the crisis would be resolved by way of negotiations that should primarily involve Ukraine and Russia, and he said Finland could be a possible location for conciliatory talks. However he did not think it likely to happen.
Sipilä's party currently enjoys a broad lead in public opinion polls, suggesting he has a strong chance of becoming Finland's next prime minister following elections just over a year from now.