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Finland approves EU Covid recovery package

MPs approved the package by a vote of 134-57 on Tuesday afternoon.

Eduskunta hyväksyi EU:n elpymispaketin.
Finland's vote also affects Europe more broadly, as the EU package needs the approval of all member states to go ahead. Image: Jani Saikko / Yle

Finland has secured the required two-thirds majority in parliament to approve the EU's 750 billion euro Covid stimulus package, in a contentious vote preceded by a days-long filibuster by the eurosceptic Finns Party.

On Tuesday afternoon MPs voted 134-57 to approve the package with two abstentions and six MPs absent.

Story continues after graph.

Eduskunnan EU-tukipaketin äänestystulos englanninkielellä.

The vote was on a knife-edge after a key committee ruled that a super majority was required to pass the package, as it had constitutional implications.

That was a particularly difficult moment for the National Coalition Party (NCP), affiliated with the European People's Party, which has criticised the package for transferring too much responsibility for debt to richer northern states.

Finland's vote also affects Europe more broadly, as the EU package needs the approval of all member states to go ahead.

The NCP initially announced the party would abstain on the vote, before several party MPs said they planned to vote against it.

On Tuesday, 26 National Coalition MPs voted for the package, 10 voted against and two abstained.

Hannu Hoskonen and Tuomas Kettunen, MPs from the Centre Party which is part of the coalition, were the only government party members to vote against the package.

Out of the government coalition members, there was one absent MP from the SDP and Centre each and four absent votes were registered from the Left Alliance.

Parliament also approved the EU's seven-year budget framework, which totals more than a trillion euros, at this afternoon's session.

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