Matti Anttonen appointed as Permanent Secretary

Press release 225/2017
19 December 2017

In its session on 19 December 2017, the Government appointed Counsellor for Foreign Affairs Matti Anttonen to serve as Permanent Secretary in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs starting on 1 March 2018.

Counsellor for Foreign Affairs Anttonen is a Finnish diplomat with a long experience of working in the Foreign Service. He will transfer to the new position from Stockholm, where he has served as Head of Mission at the Embassy of Finland since January 2017.

During his long career, Anttonen has gained expertise specifically in matters related to the East and to trade policy. From 2013 to 2016, that is, before his post as Ambassador of Finland in Stockholm, he was Under-Secretary of State for External Economic Relations in the Ministry. In the Diplomatic Service, he has worked, for instance as the Ambassador of Finland in Moscow, Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Finland in Washington, and Director of the Unit for Russia in the Ministry’s Department for Russia, Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

“I am grateful for the trust and confidence placed in me. This post provides an excellent opportunity for me to use all the knowledge and expertise that I have gained during the past over 30 years as a diplomat. Besides, it is always nice to learn new things,” Anttonen said after the appointment.

In the Foreign Ministry, the Permanent Secretary is the most senior public official, responsible for managing, developing and overseeing the activities of the Ministry and the branch of government. The Permanent Secretary is responsible for the performance management process, the quality of legislative preparation, and coordination of preparatory work by public officials in the Ministry.

“In the globalising world, the Foreign Ministry is needed both to promote Finland and Finnish actors in different parts of the globe and to produce and disseminate information relating to global trends in Finland. Finnish expertise and the strengths of Finnish society are in demand in the world. In order to meet the challenges of its tasks, the Ministry must actively improve its activities and working methods. We will succeed only in cooperation with our staff,” Anttonen summarises his view of the future of the Ministry.

Inquiries: Pirjo Tulokas, Deputy Director General for Personnel, tel. +358 295 351 413. Requests for interview should be addressed to Niina Hyrsky, Counsellor for Press and Cultural Affairs, tel. +46 708 439 997.

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