År 1984 i Finlands utrikespolitik
President Koivisto noted in his New Year's Speech that the past year was no cause for rejoicement regarding international relations development. Set-backs were experienced in arms limitation yet the necessity of arms negotiations was not disputed. President Koivisto considered the conclusion of the Madrid CSCE follow-up meeting as the most positive event. President Koivisto said that the most essential requirement in international relations is mutual trust. In the case of Finland, the prolonging the Fenno-Soviet FCMA Treaty was a good example of a trustful relationship.
Special Presidential Assistant for Foreign Affairs, Jaakko Kalela, was appointed Secretary-General to the President of the Republic. Mr Kalela continues as the President's chief advisor in foreign policy.
Under-Secretary of State, Åke Wihtol, declared that in the next five-year trade agreement negotiations a mechanism should be created which will prevent the negative effects of price changes. The Soviet part also regards such a mechanism necessary. New forms of cooperation, such as production cooperation, and the clearing-compensation system have arisen in Finnish-Soviet trade. Mr Wihtol gave a speech on the occasion of publishing a book entitled "Finnish-Soviet Economic Relations” edited in cooperation between the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA), and the Institute of World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO) in Moscow.
Finland, Sweden and Norway gave an oral protest to the Kenyan Government concerning the exchange of political prisoners. (The exchange violated the 1951 UN agreement on protection of political refugees.)
The Stockholm Disarmament Conference was opened. Finland and Sweden supported initiatives within the N+N states (neutral and non-aligned CSCE states), that promote solutions to problematic issues.
The Advisory Committee on Economic Relations with developing countries (TALKE), stated that the central questions in Finland's development policy are the attainment of the goals set and the emphasis on the quality of aid.
Finland and Singapore signed an air traffic agreement.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen noted in the Stockholm Disarmament Conference, that formal arrangements will put an end to speculations, caused by nuclear strategy and new arms technology, about the Nordic area. However, Finland did not submit any special proposal regarding the Nordic NWFZ. Minister Väyrynen said that the Stockholm Conference can have a positive effect on the preconditions necessary for disarmament, but it doesn't replace other disarmament negotiations.
In an interview with the Finnish' News Agency (STT) Prime Minister Sorsa noted that the future of Finnish-Soviet trade depends on Finland's ability to expand and diversify her trade import.
The Finnish and Swedish ministers convened in Helsinki to discuss the position of Finnish immigrants in Sweden. Representing Sweden were Social Affairs Ministers Gertrud Sigurdsson and Sten Andersson and Immigration Minister Anita Gradin. Representing Finland were Minister of Labour UrP0 Leppänen and Ministers of Social Welfare and Public Health Vappu Taipale and Eeva Kuuskoski-Vikatmaa. Also participating were Ministers of Education from both countries. Finland proposed an extension of social services and education in the Finnish language in Sweden. The Swedish ministers replied that the services in Finnish will not be extended on the scale demanded by Finland although there is sufficient reason for an increase. In his address to the conference, Prime Minister Sorsa said that the identity preservation of Finnish immigrants also requires support from the Swedish government.
Finland and France signed an agreement easing entry permit regulations.
The foreign Affairs Administration Committee submitted a report to the Foreign Ministry proposing a permanent post of Foreign Trade Minister to be directly under the Foreign Ministry. The commercial department would be divided into distinct sectors: West, East and the developing countries. The goal of the committee was the improvement of the administration and leadership in managing foreign affairs. The report emphasized the parliamentary features in foreign policy decision-making. According the report, the work of Cabinet's Affairs Committee has lacked systematic planning.
Finland recognized the Sultanate of Brunei.
President and Mrs Mauno Koivisto spent their vacation in the Canary Islands and on Jan. 26th the President met King Juan Carlos and Prime Minister Felipe Gonzales in Madrid.
The leading daily Helsingin Sanomat published an article concerning the foundation of the Polish solidarity Union and the means by which the Foreign Ministry has acquired information about activities and members of the Union. According to the article, the statement released by the Foreign Ministry indicates a mentality which gives priority to political motives rather than basic rights of citizens and implicate somewhat questionable information gathering techniques.
A meeting of the Finnish- Saudi-Arabian Economic, Technological and Scientific Joint Commission was held in Jeddah. The issues dealt with the improvement of the cooperation in fields of electricity, petrochemical and fertilizer industries, and construction civilian bomb shelters.
Finnish-Chinese cultural exchange agreement.
A research group studying Finnish arms export policy criticized it for the lack of clear principles. Presently the only motive for weapons export is to support manufactures' interests. The group proposed a total arms export ban or their export only in special cases.
Minister of Justice Cristoffer Taxell, on the dual franchise, commented that if Sweden grants Finns who have lived in Sweden for three years the right to vote, they can still maintain their right to vote in Finnish parliamentary elections.
In a speech at the Opening Ceremonies of the 1984 Diet, President Koivisto stated that the work to achieve a nuclear free Nordic zone must under all circumstances be continued. According to the President, mutual understanding and increased confidence brought about by the Stockholm Disarmament Conference can decrease the fear and danger of military aggression and pave way for smoother talks on the next stage of the conference.
Gunnar Lassinantti, representing the Swedish Peace Movement, stated on the Swedish radio that NATO planned to invade areas of Northern Sweden, Finland and the Soviet Union as counter-attack to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. According to the interview the information was based on American sources.
An agreement with the UNU on the World Institute for Development Economics Research (WIDER).
During the visit of Soviet Gosplan Chairman and Deputy Minister, Nikolai Baibakov to Finland, increased deliveries and the price level of natural gas were agreed upon. Deliveries will increase by 850 million units in 1987, by 1.100 units in 1990 and by 1.750 unit in the year 2000. Prime Minister Sorsa hosted the visit.
President Koivisto, Prime Minister Sorsa and Foreign Minister Väyrynen sent their condolences for the death of Yuri Andropov. In his eulogy, President Koivisto emphasized the great interest which Andropov had in developing Finnish-Soviet relations.
In a speech at a seminar on development cooperation, held by the Progressive Science Association, Minister Väyrynen stressed that more attention should be paid on cultural exchange agreements with those countries that receive development aid from Finland.
President Koivisto and Foreign Minister Väyrynen attended the funeral of Party Leader and President of the Soviet Union Yuri Andropov. Foreign Minister Väyrynen predicted that the change in leadership does not affect Soviet foreign policy or the Finnish-Soviet relations.
The Soviet Ambassador to Finland, V.M. Sobolev, said that the realization of Finnish construction projects in the Soviet Union is possible only if Finland will increase the importation of Soviet products. It is no longer possible to balance trade only by oil purchases.
The 32nd Session of the Nordic Council was held in Stockholm. The issues discussed were school problems of Finnish immigrants in Sweden, the franchise of immigrants living in Sweden, inter-Nordic franchise, and economic cooperation and employment problems. Chairman of the Finnish delegation was M.P. Mrs Elsi Hetemäki-Olander.
The Soviet Union cannot attack Norway from Finland's territory without encountering resistance from the Finns, stated Norwegian Colonel Vigar Aabräk in the Norsk Milltar Tidskrift (Norwegian Military Review). This estimate was believed to lead to the Soviet Union to abstain from attacking NATO's northern side by land.
The Foreign Ministry granted a gift of over 25 million FIM for a tractor factory project in Tanzania. The Ministry appropriated 4.9 million FIM for a gold mine project.
Foreign Minister Paavo Väyrynen, answering Norway's Prime Minister Kàre Willoch's pessimism about the Swedish initiative regarding the formation of a Nordic nuclear-weapon-free zone (NWFZ), stated that the submarine issue between Sweden and the Soviet Union, and the recent strain in Norwegian- Soviet relations due to the espionage scandal, should not affect the Nuclear-free zone initiative.
According to a report on development cooperation policy, submitted by the Cabinet to the Parliament, aid is given to countries who pursue to a strengthen their independence and improve their social and economic conditions. This is the qualitative criteria of aid. The quantitative goal of aid is to reach 0,7 per cent of the GNP by the end of the 1980's.
The Percentage Movement does not approve of the development model recommended in the Cabinet's report on Finnish development cooperation. They claim the goals for development should not be based on economic growth and industrialization but on helping the poorest countries and the people most in need.
Israel expressed her "deep disapproval” of Prime Minister Sorsa's meeting with PLO Leader Yasser Arafat in Tunisia.
President Koivisto opened the 10th anniversary commemoration of the Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Baltic Sea in Helsinki. In his address on behalf of Finland, Minister of Environment Matti Ahde noted that the agreement has improved the marine conditions of the Baltic Sea. The new medium-term plan agreed upon will concentrate on limiting waste disposals into the Baltic Sea. The representative of the German Federal Republic Mr Peter Ehlers was elected as the new Chairman of the Commission and the Soviet Professor Herald-Adam Velner was chosen as the new General Secretary of the Commission secretariat based in Helsinki.
The IVth appendix of the general agreement on maritime protection in the Baltic Sea was modified.
In NATO's field exercises in North Norway Commander-in-Chief of the NATO Forces in Europe, Gen. Bernard W. Rogers stated that it would be problematic for NATO if Finland was incapable of defending her neutrality in the event of a Soviet violation.
In Helsinki the first round of negotiations was held on the frame agreement of Finnish-Soviet trade for 1986—90.
Former Norwegian Foreign Minister Knut Frydenlund expressed his wish in the Finnish- Norwegian co-operation seminar held in Hanasaari, that Finland would increase its approval of Norway's security policy. Occasional misunderstandings have arisen between Finland and Norway regarding security questions despite the fact that super-power tensions have immediate impacts on both countries.
The Foreign Ministry appropriated 18 million FIM for the Chittagong harbour project in Bangladesh.
Prime Minister Sorsa informed the Parliament that his meeting with PLO Leader Yasser Arafat in Tunisia had not been agreed upon beforehand. During Sorsa's official visit to Tunisia (8—15.3.) Mr Arafat paid an informal complementary call which was outside the official protocol.
The 36th anniversary of the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance (FCMA) was celebrated in Moscow. The Finnish delegation was lead by Minister at the Ministry of Finance Pekka Vennamo. Representatives of the Finnish-Soviet Friendship Society also attended the celebrations.
On occasion of the 36th anniversary of the FCMA Treaty in Finland, Minister for Trade and Industry Seppo Lindblom emphasized in his address the active role of the state in maintaining the Finnish-Soviet relationship of friendship and cooperation. Head of the Soviet delegation, Foreign Minister of the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist RepublicV.M. Vinogradov, stated that the Fenno-Soviet relations are based on a permanently stabilized principle of trust. According to Mr Vinogradov, the security of Northern Europe is strengthened by mutual cooperation, and not by military activity. President Koivisto attended the celebrations.
The Soviet Embassy in Finland found it odd that two American vessels simultaneously visited Finland on the anniversary of the FCMA Treaty. According to the Foreign Ministry, these two events had no connection to each other.
Prime Minister Sorsa noted in an interview with Suomen Sosiaalidemokraatti that Finland's neutrality policy is acknowledged top be credible and pragmatic due to the current stable state of Finnish-Soviet relations. According to Sorsa, Finland stands for the principle that countries who refuse to deploy nuclear weapons in their territories, are justified to receive guarantees that nuclear weapons will not be used against them.
The national Coalition Party held a seminar on international politics in Turku. According to the Party Chairman, Ilkka Suominen, the Nordic NWFZ could be strengthened by an international treaty banning the threat and the use of military force and the first use of nuclear weapons.
Foreign Minister Paavo Väyrynen, in a speech held at the Paasikivi Society in Tampere, stated that Finland, regarding to the international management of human rights, maintains a policy that the internationally agreed upon commitments and obligations should be adhered to. Minister Väyrynen emphasized cooperation between the UN members and the Human Rights Organs of the UN.
Minister of Defence Vikko Pihlajamäki inspected the Finnish sectors of the UN Peacekeeping Forces on the Golan Heights, in Lebanon, and in Cyprus.
The Praesidium and the commissions of the Nordic Council convened in Helsinki. The conference nominated an administrator to work for a renewal of the Council by making drafts for general and culture budgets, and for the combination of the different secretariats.
According to Ambassador Sobolev, Finland could participate in big construction projects in the Soviet Union if the contracts could be paid in delivery goods. There are at least 80 projects, the biggest being a billion FIM-project on the Kola Peninsula.
Finnish docks received contracts in shipbuilding from the Soviet Union worth approximately three billion FIM. The deals include 16 ships whose deliveries fall into the frame agreement beginning in 1986.
The Finnish Fund of Industrial Development Co-operation Ltd. (FINNFUND) (TEKERA) will become a shareholder in the Zimbabwe Development Bank. The project is one of the five investment projects approved by the Fund last year.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen attended a meeting of the UNICEF supervisory board in Rome. In his address Minister Väyrynen emphasized Finland's full support for the UNICEF program of lessening the infant mortality rate. In the Vatican, Minister Väyrynen discussed the global situation and its future prospects with Pope John Paul Ilnd. Talks with Foreign Minister Guilio Andreotti dealt with East-West relations and the situation in Europe.
President and Mrs Mauno Koivisto paid an unofficial visit to the Soviet Union. On the 26th The President had talks with the President and Party Leader Konstantin Chernenko on the general state of Finnish-Soviet relations, economic relations, disarmament questions, the Stockholm Disarmament Conference and security issues in the Nordic area. After the meeting, President Koivisto noted the pessimistic views the Soviet leaders had on the global situation and on superpower relations. From Moscow the President and Mrs Mauno Koivisto went for a holiday on the Crimean peninsula.
At the Disarmament Committee in Geneva, Finland demanded guarantees of respect for the status on non-nuclear-weapon states regardless of the circumstances. Finland stated that she will submit a memorandum to the Conference in June regarding the surveillance of the Chemical weapons ban treaty.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen received a committee report on plans to establish a national development volunteer corps.
A former major in the Norwegian Army, Mr Einar Edvardsen, stated in a Nordic Peace Conference held in Norway, that he had participated in military manoeuvres presupposing the use of nuclear weapons in Finnish airspace. Mr Edvardsen urged the Nordic Peace Movements to pressure the Norwegian Government to answer questions on Norway's defence policy and NATO's defence plans for the Nordic areas.
A Center Party delegation expressed its approval for the neutrality policy conducted by President Koivisto.
The Finnish People's Democratic League (FPDL) stated that when estimating the threat of nuclear arms to Finland, it was justified to take into account the possibility that nuclear weapons would be directed against targets on Finnish territory or that Finland is directly threatened by nuclear weapons. The changes in nuclear arms strategies and in armaments call for a careful reassessment of Finnish security policy not only in the Foreign Ministry and the military, but in other as well.
The papers of the former President J.K. Paasikivi (1946—56), held in the Finnish National Archives, were made accessible for researchers.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen stated that Finland will not take part in defusing the mines in the Nicaraguan coast because, according to the Finnish laws, the Finnish military, with the expection of the UN Peacekeeping Forces, cannot participate in military activity outside Finland's borders.
An agreement with Norway on changes of fishing regulations in the Näätämö River fishing district.
Minister for Foreign Trade Jermu Laine attended a conference on employment in Strasbourg, France, participated by West European Goverments and trade unions. Representatives from the Central Organization of the Finnish Trade Union, Municipal Worker's and Employers' Union, Finnish Central Organization of Functionaries' and Civil Servants' Union, and the Union of Metalworkers partook in the conference.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen, in an interview to Keskisuomalainen, stated that the core thoughts of the Paasikivi-Kekkonen line are not always remembered in the foreign policy debate. Minister Väyrynen regarded President Koivisto's endeavours to emphasize the role of the Cabinet and the Parliament in foreign policy decision-making as a positive change.
The lively debate on a Nordic NWFZ has, according to Foreign Minister Väyrynen, been "for strengthening the stability of the Nordic area and diminishing the strategic speculations about the area.”
Foreign Minister Väyrynen, speaking at the conference of OECD ministers, stressed that trade and development trends become distorted if the growth of joint credits cannot be controlled. The amount of gifts should be raised and joint financing should be directed only to important development projects. Minister for Foreign Trade Jermu Laine demanded that European economic policy be geared into a more stimulating direction.
Prime Minister Sorsa and Foreign Minister Laine attended the EFTA Council of ministers in Visby, Sweden. Minister Laine expressed Finland's concern about the disunified and bilateral state of world trade. Minister Laine pointed to EFTA-Japanese relations, which require the creation of a joint "Japan policy”. Prime Minister Sorsa saw it as vital that the EFTA-countries strengthen their cooperation in international organizations. According to Minister Sorsa, EFTA-cooperation does not threaten the independence of national commerce.
The Party Chairman of the Christian League, Mr Almgrenstated that Finland should invite a representative of the Israeli Government for an official visit.
The international Physicians Against Nuclear War organization held its fourth conference in Espoo. According to the physicians coming from 49 countries, the medical and environmental effects of nuclear war have been underestimated. In a letter to the leaders of the great powers the physicians demanded a stop to the production and testing of nuclear weapons.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen stated in an interview with Literaturnaja Gazeta that an agreement is possible in the Stockholm CSCE Conference.
Finland and Australia signed an extradition treaty.
An agreement between Finland and Canada on the application of the safeguards for export of nuclear materials, equipment and know- how agreement.
An agreement with the Soviet Union on cooperation in the field of film industry.
The Defence Forces decided to purchase T-72 tanks from the Soviet Union.
In an interview to The Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet Foreign Minister Väyrynen said that the contrasting Swedish and Soviet explanations of the submarine incidents put Finland in a difficult position because the explanations are given by two governments with whom Finland has good relations. Minister Väyrynen indicated that these incidents reveal shortcomings in Swedish defence, but they do not alter the basis of Nordic security policy.
The UNU World Institute for Development Economics Research (WIDER) opened its liaison office in Helsinki.
The UNU World Institute for Development Economics Research (WIDER) opened its liaison office in Helsinki.
A committee studying Finnish food aid stated in its report that food aid should be increased from the 5-6 per cent to 8 per cent of total development aid. The Foreign Ministry appropriated over 4 million FIM for humanitarian aid to developing countries.
Finland announced her support to the UNDP proposal of a global conference on the development of human resources.
A revision of the nuclear cooperation agreement between Finland and the Soviet Union commenced in Finland. The negotiations were connected to a draft agreement which guarantees that non-military nuclear cooperation will not be abused.
The Soviet Deputy Prime Minister N.Y. Talyzin, in an interview to Keskisuomalainen, said that the Soviet Union is ready to support a Nordic NWFZ and to have discussions on declaring the Baltic Sea into a nuclear-free zone. Minister Talyzin emphasized that the NNWFZ is mainly a Nordic issue. Foreign Minister Väyrynen gave a statement on the Nordic NWFZ saying that Finland strives to promote the NWFZ plan, and appreciates the continuing Soviet support.
The Finnish-Soviet Intergovernmental Commission for Economic Cooperation convened in Helsinki. The delegations were led by Deputy Foreign Trade Minister A.N. Manzhulo and Foreign Trade Minister Jermu Laine. The protocol was signed on June 29th. The trade is predicted to exceed the level of 25 billion rubbles during the frame agreement period of 1986—90. The Commission proposed an initiation of logging by Finnish firms in the North-West of the Soviet Union. It was hoped that an agreement can be reached in 1984 on extending the natural gas pipeline in Finland. Concerning export projects, it was decided to explore construction of dye metallurgy and petrochemical plants in the Soviet Union.
According to the opinion poll made by the Defence Information Planning Commission (MTS), the majority of Finnish youth (between 18 and 25) support both national defence and the peace movement.
Unofficial working group with Finnish chairmanship was nominated in the Stockholm CSCE conference. The missions in the group were to agree on working methods of the conference in order to speed up the blocked situation before the end of the second stage of the conference.
Foreign Trade Minister Jermu Laine recommended in an interview with the Soviet Union News Agency APN, that Finnish companies should form joint ventures with enterprises in the CMEA countries.
The Foreign Ministry appropriated 5.75 million FIM to UNCFD (UN Capital Development Fund), for projects in the least developed countries.
In the opening address of the Space 2000 exhibition Foreign Minister Väyrynen said that the bilateral Finnish-Soviet cooperation on space technology is centered on study of the earth and its near-space.
The Club of Rome held a conference in Helsinki discussing forestry problems and development. President Koivisto attended the official inauguration on July 11th. Prime Minister Sorsa emphasized in his speech the importance of implementing the Nordic NWFZ and regarded the arms race in space as alarming. Dr. Alexander King from England was elected as the new Club Chairman, and Mr Bertrand Schneider from France, was elected the First General Secretary.
Under-Secretary of State, Martti Ahtisaari announced at the 2nd International Aid Conference of African Refugees in Geneva, that Finland can support refugees in Africa with 58 million FIM during 1985-87.
In Pravda, Yuri Kuznetsov accused an American delegation of Senators of trying to pull Finland into the sphere of American military and political influence.
An agreement was reached between Finland and the Soviet Union on the boundaries of the Fishing Zones and the continental shelf in the Gulf of Finland and the North-Eastern part of the Baltic Sea.
President Koivisto, in an interview with the Commercial TV News, said that Finland is exploring the possibilities of hosting the 10th CSCE anniversary celebrations in Helsinki in 1985 on the highest possible level, preferring the level of the signing of the Helsinki Final Act.
In an interview to Etelä-Suomen Sanomat Foreign Minister Väyrynen declared that Finland opposes the militarization or outer-space but supports peaceful international co-operation in space.
In an interview with Kansan Uutiset, the former Chairman of the Finnish Communist Party Aarne Saarinen stated that he had proposed in 1982 to the Social Democratic Party Chairman Kalevi Sorsa that he should run for President. Saarinen noted that President Koivisto has been able to maintain good relations with the Soviet Union.
Social Welfare and Public Health Minister Eeva Kuuskoski-Vikatmaa lead a delegation to the UN Population Conference in Mexico. Mrs Kuuskoski-Vikatmaa announced that Finland will grant a 3- year payment to the UNFPA (UN Fund for Population Activities) in the autumn of 1984.
Finland stated in the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) Conference held in Vienna, that it is more vital to keep up and improve the current production capacity of developing countries than to introduce new industries.
According to Defence Minister Pihlajamäki, the Lutherian Church World Conference's recommendation to send one per cent of the defence expenditure to aid starvation victims is inappropriate to Finland.
Defence Minister Pihlajamäki stated that the fourth Parliamentary Defence Committee should be appointed by the end of 1984. As an alternative, a committee could plan a program for the improvement of defence preparedness for 1986 and onwards, or it could also take into account needs outside of the defence sector.
In a seminar on Soviet trade held in Jyväskyla, Minister Laine estimated that the trade surplus for Finland will decrease by the end of 1984. According to Minister Laine members of the Finnish-Soviet Intergovernmental Commission for Economic Cooperation, should be elected according to knowledge of eastern trade and not according to parliamentary representation.
Minister of Interior Matti Luttinen commented the claims published in Swedish newspapers that Finland treats Soviet refugees differently from others. According to Minister Luttinen Soviet citizens have the same possibilities of being granted asylum in Finland as those coming from other countries.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen demanded that the budget for development aid should be raised according to commitments being made, which amounts to 0,44 per cent of the GNP or 1,4 billion FIM in 1985.
The TALKE Advisory Committee proposed that the 1985 budget should allocate 0,47 per cent of the GNP for development aid.
The five-year trade agreement was renewed between Finland and Yugoslavia, in which Finland continues to give Yugoslavia GSP treatment.
The Swedish Minister of Immigration Anita Gradin suggested that dual nationality could solve the conflict of resident foreigners' voting right in Sweden. According to Finnish authorities, Finnish law does not acknowledge dual citizenship.
The Percentage Movement demanded that development aid is increased to 0,47 per cent of the GNP in 1985. Is justified its demand with Finland's economic growth and favourable public opinion.
Foreign Ministers Väyrynen and Bodström visited the Tomb River Valley in connection with the questions of border trade and fishing.
In an interview with Aamulehti Foreign Minister Väyrynen maintained that there is not enough discussion in Finland on the growing internationalization of capital and finance markets in Finland. This will cause problems if internationalization will restrict Finland's independent money and currency policy.
The Nordic TV workgroup convened in Helsinki and predicted that the Nordsat-satellite will be launched into space in 1989 or 1990. Further studies regarding program policy, organization and costs, are required.
The Finnish Lawyers Peace Commission held a seminar in Espoo concerning nuclear-weapon-free zones from the point of view of international treaties and international law. Participants included representatives from both great powers, the Nordic countries, and countries from Central Europe.
The Cabinet decided that Finland will receive an additional 50—60 Vietnamese refugees.
The International Red Cross held its second Peace Conference in Stockholm and the Aland Islands with participants coming from 105 member countries. The conference demanded that the Red Cross should be more active in promoting world peace. Two Finnish proposals concerning civilians and the use of child-soldiers in war were accepted for the final document.
It was announced, that Deputy Prime Minister Ivan Arkhipov will succeed Foreign Trade Minister Nikolai Patolitsev as the Chairman of the Finnish-Soviet Intergovernmental Commission for Economic Cooperation.
Editor-in-Chief of Hufvudstadsbladet Jan Magnus Jansson, in an interview with Suomenmaa, compared Mauno Koivisto and Urho Kekkonen as Presidents. President Koivisto is concentrating more on Finland's relations with the Soviet Union and the Scandinavian countries while decreasing on other international activities because of the limited room of manoeuvre caused by the strained international situation. President Kekkonens foreign policy decisions cannot, however, always be interpreted with a view on domestic politics, e.g. his critical view of the Social Democratic Party in the late 1950s. Foreign policy was always of central importance for President Kekkonen. Jansson said that a conservative or centrist candidate will have no chance in the 1988 elections if President Koivisto will run for a second term. Jansson predicted that in 1994, Prime Minister Sorsa will be the candidate of the SDP, and the non-socialist parties will then nominate their own candidates.
The armistice between Finland and the Soviet Union came into force 40 years ago.
The Conservative Party Chairman Ilkka Suominen, declared that his party will seek a conservative candidate in the 1988, presidential election.
The Cabinet proposed a reform of the alternative to military service by lengthening the service time of the conscientious objectors from 12 to 16 months and by abolishing the board which scrutinizes the personal beliefs of the objectors. Jehovah's witnesses would be exempted from military service altogether.
The foreign Ministry stated that Finland has made inquiries in the CSCE countries, regarding the level the 10th CSCE anniversary celebrations should be arranged on.
A 450-person delegation from Finnish trade unions participated in The Peace Week, which was organized by Finnish and Soviet trade unions in different areas of the Soviet Union. During the week the 40th anniversary of the signing of the truce agreement was celebrated.
A delegation of 50 persons from the Soviet Central Federation of Trade Unions (VZSPS) lead by the Secretary of the VZSPS, Vladimir Bogatikov, visited Finland. The delegation participated in the Peace Week events arranged by trade unions from both countries.
The Cabinet submitted its proposal for the 1985 budget, totalling 92,9 million FIM, to the Parliament. The Foreign Ministry appropriations were 1800 million FIM of which 1314 million FIM went to development aid (0,4 per cent of the GNP). The proposal supported the plan of having national volunteers working in developing countries and the UNU World Institute for Development Economics Research (WIDER) was granted 45 million FIM. The Defence Ministry received 4770 million FIM which is 5.2 per cent of the whole budget.
The truce agreement between Finland and the Soviet Union was signed 40 years ago.
Chairman of the VZSPS Stepan Shalajev attended a session of the Finnish and Soviet trade unions' permanent consultative committee. The Finnish delegation consisted of representatives from the Central Organisation of the Finnish Trade Unions (SAK), Finnish Central Organisation of Functionaries' and Civil Servants'Union (TVK), the Confederation of Technical Employees' Organizations in Finland (STTK) and from the Finnish Central Organization of Academic Professions (Akava). It was agreed in the committee that in the future, trade unions from both countries will endeavour for more concrete cooperation. Mr Shlajev attended the Sept. 22nd main event of the Peace Week in Helsinki, arranged by the trade unions.
In an interview to Kauppalebti (Financial News) Prime Minister Sorsa supported limiting the term of the members of the Economic Joint Commission of Finland and the Soviet Union.
Both President Koivisto and President Chernenko gave speeches on TV commemorating the 40 the anniversary of the 1944 armistice agreements. President Chernenko said that the good relations between the Soviet Union and Finland reflect the benefits which arise from peaceful co-existence between countries of different social systems. President Koivisto noted that he will continue to pursue the Paasikivi-Kekkonen line which has guaranteed good relations for 40 years.
On Sept. 25th, at the UN General Assembly, Foreign Minister VSyrynen expressed his concern about growing international tension and the constant disappointments in disarmament during the recent years. Nuclear arms proliferation and the arms race in space must be stopped, and simultaneously regional disarmament must be undertaken. Minister Väyrynen also spoke on the severe economic crisis in Africa.
The 40th anniversary celebration of the foundation of the Finnish People's Democratic League and the legalization of the Finnish Communist Party were held in Helsinki.
Minister Pekka Vennamo held a speech on behalf of the Nordic countries at the IMF meeting in Washington. The Nordic countries advocated the removal of world trade barriers within GATT and proposed negotiations for the strengthening of free trade.
Foreign Trade Ministers Jermu Laine and Nikolai Patolitshev signed a frame agreement on goods exchange for Finland and the Soviet Union for 1986—90 in connection with Prime Minister Sorsa's visit to Moscow. The trade agreement is valued at 28 billion rubbles. Additions to the agreement include the increase of manufacturing cooperation by the end of the agreement period. A renewed agreement of 2 billion FIM for the Viborg cellulose factory was signed.
Parliamentarians representing the Social Democratic Party, the Centre Party, and the Swedish People's Party, recommended an increase of development aid by 155 million FIM amounting to 0,44 per cent of the GNP.
An agreement modifying the Nordic Social Welfare agreement, of March 5th 1981, was signed.
A Finnish delegation headed by Foreign Trade Minister Laine attended a meeting of the Finnish-Iraqi Economic, Technological and Scientific Joint Commission in Iraq.
In the 5th Session of the Finnish-Hungarian Scientific, Economic and Technological Joint Commission in Budapest, it was agreed that starting on February 1985 both countries will begin to use free currencies in their bilateral trade.
Finland opened diplomatic relations with the Maldives Islands.
In an interview to the periodical Maailma ja Me President Koivisto stated that the 40-year old Finnish-Soviet Friendship Society has increased knowledge about the Soviet Union among Finns and created a solid base for good neighbourly relations between the two countries.
An agreement was reached with the German Democratic Republic on the arrangements of refunding property left in GRD after the 2nd world war.
The Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee proposed that the Cabinet should annually submit a report on development aid to the Parliament. This would strengthen the Parliament's position regarding development aid issues. According to the Committee, financing the WIDER Institute should not diminish other development aid.
The Development Aid Committee (DAC) of OECD-countries stated that Finland should have more flexibility in the payment of local aid costs when the receiver country has problems with the payments. According to the DAC-report, Foreign Ministry personnel should be increased due to expanding development aid.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen, First Deputy Speaker of the Parliament Pirkko Tyoläjärvi, and the Chairman of the Finnish Soviet Friendship Society, Counsellor of State Martti Miettunen attended the combined 40th anniversary of the 1944 truce agreement and the establishment of The Finnish-Soviet Friendship society. Minister Väyrynen met the Soviet Prime Minister Tikhonov and had talks with Foreign Minister Gromyko on the international situation, Finnish-Soviet relations, and Sino-Soviet relations. The speeches Minister Väyrynen gave during his visit dealt with the history of Finnish foreign policy.
The main activities of the UN Disarmament Week, the peace marches, were organized in Finland. Approximately 160.000 people participated in the marches, of which 20—25 000 in Helsinki. The themes of the week were the withdrawal of euromissiles from both East and West, and the demand for a nuclear-free zone stretching from the Nordic area to the Balkans.
The Finnish Cabinet declared that there are no obstacles to uniting the secretariats of the Nordic Council.
Prime Minister Sorsa addressed the Norden-Society on the occasion of its 60th anniversary celebrations, Minister Sorsa said that the Nordic countries are looking for possibilities to implement the New International Economic Order (NIEO) regionally. A possibility could be the area of development cooperation in Southern Africa (SADCC-countries). Minister Sorsa stressed the need to expand the activity of the Nordic Investment Bank.
During Yugoslavian Foreign Minister Milenko Bojanici's visit to Finland a long-term trade agreement confirming the mutual customs preferences and trade in free currencies, between Finland and Yugoslavia was signed. Foreign Trade Minister Laine signed the agreement on behalf of Finland.
The world largest cruise liner, The Royal Princess, built by the Finnish Company, Wärtsila, was delivered to its English buyer.
The Cabinet resolved to inquire from all Parliamentary parties about the necessity and aims of the 4th Parliamentary Defence Committee.
The Finnish General Stat College held its 60th anniversary. President Koivisto attended the celebrations and the address of state was given by Defence Minister Pihlajamäki.
Defence Minister Pihlajamäki said at the Opening Ceremony of the 93rd National Defence Course that the parliamentary defence committees have brought systematic and long-range planning to the Defence Forces. The Commanding General of the Defence Forces, Gen. Jaakko Valtanen, stated that Finland's ability to repel territorial attacks will improve by the introduction of radar-and computer systems to the Defence Forces. General Valtanen observed that the current international situation has been compared to the tenseness of the Cuban crisis.
The EFTA Council of ministers convened in Geneva with Finland represented by Foreign Trade Minister Jermu Laine. Under consideration was the Finnish proposal given in May in Visby for cooperation between EFTA and EC in sectors of research and development.
The fourth Session of the Stockholm Disarmament Conference started. The Finnish delegation submitted an additional proposal of working groups for different issue areas. The proposals were added to the July report submitted by N+N States.
The Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee report supported the annual Cabinet report on Finland's development aid. The committee discussed passing a framework law for development aid.
At the Disarmament Council of the Socialist International in Tokyo, the Chairman Mr Kalevi Sorsa announced that he will attempt to meet the leaders of the great powers in the Spring of 1985 in order to reinitiate negotiations on limiting nuclear weapons. The Socialist International aims to organize a large disarmament conference during 1985. Mr Sorsa discussed with Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone about easing East-West tensions and balancing Finnish-Japanese trade, which shows a deficit for Finland.
Prime Minister Sorsa said in an interview with the Norwegian TV that the conditions for negotiations on a Nordic NWFZ could arise before the end of this decade.
Under Secretary of Agriculture A.I. Ijevlev in the main event of the Finnish-Soviet Friendship Month in Tampere, said that the Soviet Union is ready to discuss a nuclear-free Baltic Sea. Otherwise Mr Ijenlev spoke about relations between Finland and the Soviet Union. President Koivisto attended the celebrations.
The Cabinet decided to continue with the present bilateral program counties (Egypt, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Zambia and Vietnam) for 1985—87. These countries will receive 55 per cent of total bilateral aid. A minimum of 30 per cent will be allocated to the least developed countries. Grants and credits are appropriated in 1985, of value 685 million FIM, in 1986 of 875 million FIM and in 1987 of 970 million FIM.
Wärtsilä and the Soviet V/O Sudoimport signed a two billion FIM agreement in which Wärtsilä will deliver two nuclear-powered icebreakers to the Soviet Union by 1988-89.
President and Mrs Mauno Koivisto paid an official state visit to England. President Koivisto had talks with Prime Minister Thatcher on East-West relations, disarmament, and a Nordic NWFZ. In his dinner speech, President Koivisto emphasized the stability and continuity of security politics in the Nordic area. In the closing press conference, The President said that Finland is still conducting an active foreign policy despite some restraining caused by unfavourable international relations. President Koivisto expressed his concern for the strained state of Swedish-Soviet relations.
The 40th anniversary celebration of the signing of the truce agreement and the foundation of the Finnish-Soviet Friendship Society took place in Helsinki. The celebrations were attended by President Koivisto and the Soviet delegation headed by the Secretary of the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party, Grigori Romanov. In his speech Mr Romanov acknowledged those people and circles who started to pursue a new foreign policy in Finland after the war, and the vast support this policy receives among the Finns. President Koivisto noted that when evaluating present Finnish foreign policy, one should consider as background the circumstances and events of the autumn of 1944.
The 12th meeting of the Finland-CMEA Cooperation Commission was held in Helsinki. 19 new joint agreements were proposed for CMEA and Finnish companies. Minister Jermu Laine acted as chairman of the meeting.
The Union of the Conscientious Objectors regarded the Defence Ministry plant to lengthen the alternative to military service to 16 months as an extra punishment. According to them, their service should be kept apart from national defence and made part of development co-operation.
Finland's address to the UN General Assembly on South African apartheid policy, condemned the legal racism of South Africa and demanded support for the internal liberation movement.
Klaus Sahlgren, General- Secretary for the UN Economic Commission for Europe (ECE), in a speech at the Paasikivi Society, on the trends of the economic development in Europe entitled "To Euro-pessimism or -optimism?”, stated that European countries should pursue a policy of economic growth because they have resources for that, and that Europe cannot wait for impulses to growth coming from outside.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen, in an interview with Uusi Suomi, said that Finland had no realistic changes to pursue a more active and demonstrative foreign policy. Väyrynen was of the opinion that the great powers do not need mediators, even though he regarded as positive Prime Minister Sorsa's activity in the Socialist International, of which he is the Chairman of the Disarmament Council.
The Finnish UN Association held a seminar on "The Role of Nongovernmental Organizations in Foreign Policy” commemorating its 30th anniversary. The main speaker was Chairman of the International Peace Research Association (IPRA) Mr Chadwick F. Alger.
The national Coalition Party Chairman, Ilkka Suominen proposed in his talk to the Paasikivi Society in Pori that the Parliament should start preparations for a conference of Nordic MP's to promote the Nordic NWFZ plan as suggested in the Copenhagen NWFZ conference.
Finnish UN Association was founded 30 years ago.
A statute concerning Finnish representatives on the Finnish-Soviet Intergovernmental Commission for Economic Cooperation was given by the Parliament. The Chairman and two vice chairmen are elected from the Cabinet. The other twenty members who are elected for five-year terms should be central authorities of Finnish-Soviet trade and economy.
The Stockholm Disarmament Conference was divided into two groups on the basis of the proposal by the N+N States. The first group deals with the prior announcement of military activity and their surveillance while the other group concentrates on the proposal made by NATO countries for improving communication, and the proposals made by the Warsaw Pact to abstain from the use of force, and nuclear-free zones.
The Cabinet presented to the Parliament a proposal for a partial modification of the Constitution, concerning the presidential election. In the proposal, a Presidential candidate could be nominated by any registered party which has representatives in Parliament, or by a group of 20.000 qualified voters. During the elections voters will select Presidential candidates and electors, who will be nominated by registered parties or groups of at least 100 persons. If any one of the candidates gets more than half of the votes, he will become President. Otherwise, the Electoral College will select the President form the running candidates. According to the proposal the number of Presidential terms will not be limited.
The SDP Party Commission did not consider it necessary to appoint the fourth Parliamentary Defence Committee, because the proposals made by its predecessor still offer adequate possibilities for the development of defence policy.
The US delegate to the Stockholm disarmament conference, Mr James E. Goodby spoke of "America and the Old Continent” at the Paasikivi Society. Mr Goodby expressed the United State's support for the Finnish and Swedish neutrality policies as a guarantee for the stability of the Nordic area's security policy.
The Finnish People's Democratic League rejected the proposal to nominate a parliamentary defence committee to supervise the development of the Defence Forces and to recommend its budget appropriations. Instead, it proposed that a committee, subordinated to The Ministry Foreign Affairs, examines the changes technology and development in nuclear strategy, causes on the state of Finnish security.
Prime Minister Sorsa attended the meeting of the Nordic Prime Ministers held in Reykjavik. The Prime Ministers urged Great Britain to reduce her sulphur emission by 30 per cent by the year 1993 and expressed their efforts in expanding economic cooperation between the Nordic and SADCC-countries.
Foreign Trade Ministers Laine and Patolitshev signed an agreement on commodity exchange between Finland and the Soviet Union for 1985. According to the agreement, the trade exchange will total 37,5 billion FIM with the trade structure remaining the same. Finland imports mainly oil, natural gas, machinery and equipment. Half of the Finnish exports centre on metal industry products. The second biggest export category is forest and furniture industry.
Head of the Finnish Stockholm CSCE delegation, Ambassodor Matti Kahiluoto noted that the conference has made more progress than expected, after its division into two groups. On the other hand, this doesn't indicate progress on the actual issues.
The central committee of the Finnish Communist Party stated that there is no reason to appoint a 4th Parliamentary Defence Committee for the improvement of Finland's defence ability. Instead, a parliamentary committee should be formed under the Foreign Ministry to cope with the changes occurring in the security policy position of Finland.
The Finnish Communist Party disapproved Finland's support of the development grants through the Latin America Development Bank to Chile.
It was noted in the Reykjavik meeting of the Nordic Ministers and the Praesidium of the Nordic Council, that the decision for the implementation of NORDSAT will not be possible in the Nordic Council conference of 1985. The problems concern both the program and economic politics. Finland was represented by Minister of Culture Gustaf Björkstrand.
The Finnish Ambassador to Switzerland, Richard Tötterman, was appointed as roving Ambassador responsible for the preparations of the CSCE 10th anniversary celebrations.
In a press conference after the 39th Session of the UN General Assembly, Foreign Minister Väyrynen noted the international situation as being more hopeful than during the previous Session, despite the set-backs experienced in multilateral diplomacy. The meeting of the Soviet and American Foreign Ministers in January 1985 is a positive sign, according to Minister Väyrynen.
A published report released by the Foreign Ministry on development aid of non-governmental and missionary organizations, commended the exemplary way these organizations attain their aid objectives. In 1985 the government appropriated 19.3 million FIM to 88 organizations and will increase it to 40 million FIM by 1987.
Finland appropriated 175 million FIM to Sri Lanka for 1985-87.
The declaration given by the Minister of Science and Culture Gustaf Björkstrand stated that Finland and other Nordic countries have proposed that UNESCO should concentrate on the most essential fields and projects of its program, since internal disputes prompted the United States to resign from the organization.
An agreement of 200 million FIM for lengthening the natural gas pipeline to Tampere and Helsinki by 1986 was signed.