Minister for Foreign Affairs Haavisto to visit Washington DC
Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto will visit Washington DC on 24 September. The aim of the visit is to strengthen the bilateral relations between the two countries and to discuss topical foreign policy themes, focusing on questions relating to Afghanistan and the Horn of Africa.
UN Food Systems Summit: Finland as a trailblazer as provider of school meals
The UN Food Systems Summit will be held virtually on 23 September during the UN General Assembly in New York. Finland’s representative at the meeting will be President of the Republic Sauli Niinistö. Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari, in his role as the World Food Programme’s School Meals Champion, will speak at the event on school meals.
Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari to visit Portugal
Minister Ville Skinnari will visit Lisbon on 21–24 September 2021. The aim of the visit is to strengthen the commercial relations between Finland and Portugal. Portugal offers significant opportunities for Finnish companies in such areas as bioeconomy and circular economy, energy, climate and digital transitions.
Minister Haavisto to attend the high-level week of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly in New York, Minister Skinnari will represent Finland at meetings virtually
The high-level meetings of the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 76) will start in New York on Monday 20 September. Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto will attend ministerial events in New York and have bilateral meetings with his counterparts and with representatives of the UN. Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari will represent Finland at several high-level meetings held in virtual format during the week.
Legislative proposal on long-term D visa facilitates labour migration
The government proposal on the introduction of a long-term national D visa in Finland promotes labour migration and includes the preparation of a fast track pledge. According to the proposal, the national D visa would first cover specialists, growth or start-up entrepreneurs and their family members.
Mikko Koivumaa appointed as Director General of Communications at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs
The Government has appointed Mikko Koivumaa as Director General of Communications at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs starting on 18 October 2021. The term of office will be five years. Koivumaa is currently Director of Communications at the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.
Finland to expand reception of visa applications in Russia
Finland will strengthen the capacity to receive visa applications in Russia starting on 1 October 2021. As of that date, Finland's Visa Application Centres in Russia will accept applications from business customers and from all applicants whose multiple-entry Schengen visa, issued by Finland for at least two years, has expired.
Nordic, Baltic and Visegrád foreign ministers to meet in Finland
Finland is coordinating the cooperation between the Nordic countries and Baltic states in the Nordic–Baltic Eight (NB8) format in 2021. The NB8 foreign ministers’ meeting will be held on 15 September at Vanajanlinna, Hämeenlinna. The NB8 countries and the Visegrád Group (V4) will have a joint meeting at foreign ministerial level on the previous day, 14 September. The V4 countries are Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.
Nordic Ministers for Cooperation to meet in Åland
The Nordic Ministers for Cooperation will meet under the leadership of Minister Thomas Blomqvist in Mariehamn 13-14 September 2021. At the meeting, the ministers will prepare the Nordic Council of Ministers’ budget for 2022 and explore the state of the Nordic freedom of movement when they meet the Freedom of Movement Council. The fourth ministerial meeting during the Finnish Presidency will be held in close cooperation with the Åland Islands and will be part of the celebrations for its 100th anniversary as an autonomous region.
Finland donates COVID-19 vaccines to improve global vaccination coverage
Finland will participate in the EU cooperation that enables donation of COVID-19 vaccines purchased in advance. During this autumn, about 3.6 million vaccines will be donated to developing countries. The vaccine donations will not slow down the rollout of vaccinations in Finland.
Finland supports value chains in sustainable forestry, mining and circular economy in developing countries
Finland supports the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) by EUR 3.6 million between 2021 and 2023 to develop value chains in sustainable forestry, mining and circular economy and to create jobs in developing countries. The project also includes a section strengthening the position of women and promoting gender equality in the work of UNIDO. The agreement was signed in Vienna on 8 September.
Minister for Foreign Affairs Haavisto to attend meeting of EU foreign ministers in Kranj and to visit Tallinn
An informal meeting of EU foreign ministers (Gymnich) will be held in Kranj, Slovenia, on 2–3 September 2021. Finland’s representative at the meeting will be Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto. After the meeting, on 3–4 September, Minister Haavisto will visit Tallinn.
Minister Skinnari to visit Tokyo
Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari will visit Japan on 1–5 September 2021. Minister Skinnari will attend the Tokyo 2021 Paralympic Games as a representative of Finnish state leaders and have meetings with Japanese ministers and representatives of Japanese companies.
Persons responsible for security of Finnish embassy personnel safely away from Kabul
Finland’s relief efforts in Afghanistan were complemented late on the night of Friday 27 August, when the employees of the company responsible for the security of Finnish Embassy personnel were successfully led inside the gates of Kabul Airport. The total number of these employees and their family members is 83 persons. Assisted by US troops, the group managed to get on a flight away from Kabul early this morning.
Changes to provision of consular services at Finnish missions abroad
Today, on 27 August 2021, the President of the Republic approved the amendment to the Annex to the Decree of the President of the Republic on the Locations of Finland’s Diplomatic Missions and the Provision of Consular Services in the Foreign Service. The amendment will enter into force at the beginning of October.
Foreign Ministry relief team leaves Afghanistan; Finland successfully evacuates 330 persons from Kabul
Finland ended its relief efforts in Kabul as planned on Thursday 26 August. Both the Foreign Ministry’s relief team and the Defence Forces’ unit tasked with safeguarding the efforts have now left Afghanistan. We will continue to provide consular assistance through other means to the extent possible.
New specialists to bolster Finnish exports
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs has recruited 20 new senior specialists in international business to work in 16 different countries. The intention is to increase Finnish exports in important export markets and, in particular, to help small- and medium-sized companies to work globally.
OSCE Secretary General visits Finland
Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Helga Schmid will visit Helsinki on Friday 27 August at the invitation of Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto. Schmid will also have discussions with President of the Republic Sauli Niinistö.