EU Ministers of Foreign Affairs to discuss Ethiopia and Ukraine on 19 April
The main topics to be discussed at the April meeting of the EU Ministers of Foreign Affairs are the situation in Ethiopia and Ukraine. Finland’s representative at the informal video conference will be Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto. The Ministers will also hold an informal exchange with the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Dmytro Kuleba.
Finland committed to ensuring global access to COVID-19 vaccines
Finland supports developing countries to fight against COVID-19 with more than EUR 80 million from its development cooperation appropriations. The sum includes a EUR 2.5 million core contribution paid to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, last year. International cooperation is instrumental for defeating the pandemic.
Ministers Lintilä and Skinnari to promote Finnish exports to Sweden in the food, textiles and health sectors
Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintilä and Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari will make a virtual Team Finland visit to Sweden on 15 April 2021. The visit is intended to intensify trade relations between Finnish and Swedish companies, particularly in the food and beverage industries, the textile industry and the sustainable healthcare sectors.
In 2020, Finland’s ODA to GNI ratio rose to 0.47 per cent
Finland's development cooperation expenditure in 2020 amounted to EUR 1 119 million. This represented 0.47 per cent of Finland's gross national income (GNI). Last year, the total amount of the exclusive ODA budget item administered by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs was EUR 708.4 million.
New Ambassador to Iraq, Permanent Representative to the OSCE and non-resident Ambassador to the Vatican
At the presidential session on Friday 9 April, the President of the Republic appointed a new Ambassador to Iraq, granted an authorisation to represent Finland in the OSCE and appointed a non-resident Ambassador to the Vatican.
Now accepting nominations for the third International Gender Equality prize
The Finnish Government launched the International Gender Equality Prize in 2017, when Finland celebrated the centenary of its independence. The purpose of the prize is to promote gender equality in global contexts and to promote discussion about equality. The nominations are open until 16 May 2021.
Ethiopia: Minister for Foreign Affairs Haavisto on a second mission mandated by the EU HR Borrell
Pekka Haavisto, Foreign Minister of Finland, mandated by the EU High Representative Josep Borrell, is undertaking a second mission to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Foreign Minister will discuss the situation in Ethiopia, notably the crisis in Tigray and its regional implications.
Recommendations to Finland on the realisation of civil and political rights
Today, on 1 April 2021, the United Nations’ Human Rights Committee issued its recommendations to Finland concerning Finland’s seventh Periodic Report on the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Business travel during COVID-19: topical information about entry restrictions on the websites of Finnish missions abroad
To support people travelling on essential business during the coronavirus pandemic, Finnish missions abroad keep their websites updated on local travel restrictions. Rules and guidance in different countries can change rapidly, which is why the Ministry for Foreign Affairs advises people travelling on business to always check the official website of the country of destination, to consider whether the trip is essential, and to act responsibly.
Improvements to the status of foreign berry pickers
On 31 March 2021, the Government proposed new legislation to improve the legal status and earnings opportunities of foreign berry pickers and to make the competitive environment equal to companies in the sector. As foreign berry pickers have not been deemed to be in an employment relationship but instead to work as entrepreneurs, their status is currently unregulated from a legal point of view.
Visa applications for seasonal work to be received in Minsk, Belarus
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs will open a Visa Application Centre in Minsk for the reception of visa applications for people in Belarus wishing to apply for seasonal work in Finland. Estonia represents Finland in Minsk in other Schengen visa application matters. People who aim to submit a visa application for other than seasonal work purposes should follow the instructions of the Embassy of Estonia.
Reviews by Finnish missions abroad show that innovative solutions to fight COVID-19 put Finland in the spotlight in the world media in 2020
According to Finland in the World Media, an annual survey commissioned by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the innovative management of the coronavirus pandemic was the most important theme connected to Finland last year. Other news in the world media highlighted the strengths of Finland’s country image: equality, high-quality education system and stable society. The review estimates that Finland’s general reputation has further improved in foreign media.
Finland raised alert level of its travel advice to Myanmar
Due to the military coup on 1 February 2021, the situation in Myanmar is now deeply disturbing. On 29 March 2021, Finland together with the other Nordic countries raised the alert level of its travel advice, urging travellers “to leave the country as soon as possible”.
Joint op-ed by 18 foreign ministers on the fight against impunity for crimes committed in Syria
Ten years ago, millions of Syrians took to the streets of Dara’a, Aleppo and Damascus, calling for democracy and respect of their fundamental rights and basic freedoms. The brutal response by the regime triggered over the span of a decade one of the most serious criminal enterprises and humanitarian crises since the Second World War resulting in more than 400 000 deaths and in countless violations of human rights.
Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari visits Stockholm
Minister Skinnari will visit Stockholm on 31 March–1 April. The purpose of the visit is to promote both countries’ access on a growth track in international trade after COVID-19. Worldwide and European recovery measures offer excellent growth opportunities for Finnish and Swedish companies when they explore solutions related to green transition, digitalisation and development of industries.
Advance voting abroad in Finland's municipal elections in 2021
The municipal elections will be held on Sunday 13 June 2021. The Act on the Postponement of the 2021 Municipal Elections entered into force on 29 March 2021. The advance voting period will be from 26 May to 8 June in Finland and from 2 to 5 June abroad.
Technology and equality addressed in the Generation Equality forum on 29–31 March – Finland holds an international lead role
The actions through which the global campaign will promote gender equality in technology and innovations will be announced on a virtual forum held in Mexico. Finland holds a lead role in this work. The forum will be attended by Prime Minister Sanna Marin and Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari.
In the first half of 2021, Finland grants nearly EUR 70 million in humanitarian assistance to strengthen food security, support refugees and promote the rights of vulnerable people
More than 200 million people across the globe need humanitarian assistance due to conflicts, natural disasters and the COVID-19 pandemic. The provision of humanitarian assistance is one of the most concrete ways of responding to crises and disasters. Finland grants a total of EUR 69.6 million to humanitarian work carried out by the UN organizations, the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, and Finnish civil society organisations.