President Kekkonen, in his New Year speech, concentrated on economic matters. He also made public the motto for Finland’s 60 the anniversary independent Finland — our common causes.
The biggest ship built in Finland (150600 dwt) was turned over to its Norwegian purchaser at the Valmet dock near Helsinki.
In a statement for the periodical "Ydin” President Kekkonen noted that détente cannot continue unhindered unless disarmament negotiations make significant progress. The President also stressed the close connection between détente and the new international economic order.
The government proposed to Parliament that Finland join the Latin American Development Bank as a non-regional member with a capital stock of 22 Mmk. Parliament approved the proposal 31.5. after voting. The votes were divided 116-33: the communists voted against. The promotion of Finnish exports was given as the reason for joining.
The American Citybank N.A. opened its representative office in Helsinki as a first American bank in Finland.
Foreign Minister Keijo Korhonen made an official visit to the Arab Republic of Egypt. During the visit an agreement on cooperation in the electronic sector was signed and preparations were started to conclude an agreement on scientific, technical and economic cooperation.
At their meeting in Kungälv, Sweden, the Nordic Ministers of Education and Culture agreed to place the common Nordic Culture Centre on Sveaborg Island, Helsinki.
the Air Force to buy 30 Leko-70 Finnish training planes. The deal will cost
about 48 Mmk. The Finnish planes compensate the earlier Saab Safir planes.
Prime Minister Martti Miettunen paid an official visit to Czechoslovakia and Bulgaria. The main topics in the discussions were expanding trade, the follow-up of the CSCE and the friendship society activities of both countries.
A Norwegian delegation headed by Minister of Industry Bjartmar Gierde arrived in Finland to open negotiations with Finnish officials on energy cooperation and trade.
Supplementary to the Paris Convention of 1960 on Third Party Liability in the field of nuclear energy.
In his speech at the opening ceremony of the 1977 regular session of Parliament President Kekkonen said that Finland shall do her best to make the Belgrade follow-up meeting successful. He said also that Finland will continue her foreign policy line and that nobody has succeeded and shall not succeed in attempts to hit a wedge to this policy, neither from abroad nor from home. Speaker Veikko Helle said in his speech that the most important task for the session is to create conditions for a majority government. A majority government can also best secure the country’s foreign policy interests.
The Finnish-Polish joint commission on scientific, industrial and technical cooperation met in Warsaw.
Convention on the Scandinavian Culture Fund.
The Secretary of the OECD Emile van Lennep made a visit in Finland. He met with President Kekkonen and other officials.
In his statement for the periodical "Rauhan puolesta” (For Peace) President Kekkonen noted — in connection with the 30th anniversary of the Paris Peace Treaty — that the treaty had established a new period in Finnish foreign policy: it created the foundation for building friendly relations with former enemies. One of the basic features of the new line was creating and maintaining good neighbourly relations between Finland and the Soviet Union.
Speaking in Brussels Dr. Mauno Koivisto, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bank of Finland, said that the Finnish mark (mk) was evidently overvalued, but there is no pressure towards devaluation. He also said that if Sweden should devaluate its monetary unit, there would be no obligation for Finland to do the same.
The OECD published its annual survey of the economic situation in Finland. It predicted that the deficit in the balance of trade would diminish only a little, unemployment was forecast to grow and inflation to remain on the average of the OECD countries, 10%. The GDP (gross domestic product) was forecast to increase by 3.5 % during the year.
Convention on international liability for damage caused by space objects.
Agreement on the EFTA industrial development fund for Portugal, 1976.
Professor Bengt Broms was re-elected chairman of the committee examining the UN Charter and the position of the UN.
A Finnish delegation travelled to Romania to continue negotiations aiming at a KEVSOS-agreement on the reciprocal removal of obstacles to trade between Finland and Romania. Finland already has KEVSOS-agreements with Hungary, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, the GDR and Poland (the last one ratified in April 1978).
In an interview for the evening paper Ilta-Sanomat Foreign Minister Korhonen explained the Cabinet's attitude to the dissident question. Korhonen noted that this matter does not concern Finland. Of the Finnish press' bearing on the Soviet dissidents he said that in the Finnish system, it's not possible for the government to take responsibility for what the press writes. Korhonen hoped, however, that Cabinet's opinion would be taken into account.
The Foreign Ministry commented on the claims which the Norwegian paper "Aftenposten” had published the previous day concerning the discussions during President Kekkonen's visit to Norway in September 1976. — According to "Aftenposten” there had been discussions on the defence of Norway and its relations to its allies. Further the paper claimed that President Kekkonen had criticized Norway for allowing German troops to arrive to its territory (the German troops were at NATO's military manoeuvres in Norway in I976 for the first time after the Second World War and there were plans for more German troop manoeuvres in 1978). The Finnish Foreign Ministry stated that there had been discussions on matters of interest to both countries and that it was natural that the security policy in Northern Europe was one of the items. Because of the confidential nature of the discussions, the Foreign Ministry said, the contents of discussions had not been publicized
A delegation of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) led by Chairman Kalevi Sorsa visited Israel and took part in the congress of the Labour Party. Sorsa met several ministers in Israel. Before the journey Sorsa had met a representative of the PLO.
The Centre for Economic Planning (TASKU) published a survey of the prospects of the Finnish economy "Suomi 1990” (Finland 1990). The survey was based on an assumed 4 % rate of growth of the GDP. The target for the increase of annual exports was set at 7 %, and for imports, 5 %.
The Nordic Cooperation Ministers approved a cooperation plan on improving the safety of nuclear energy, in Helsinki.
Foreign Minister Keijo Korhonen began an official visit to Japan, the first visit of a Finnish Foreign Minister to this country. Negotiations covered trade between Finland and Japan, and the deficit on the Finnish side. 15.12. Prime Minister Sorsa opened the first Finnish-Japanish economic seminar. The Finnish trade delegation on its journey to Japan and South-Korea also took part to this seminar. Japanese Prime Minister Fukuda said that there were possibilities to increase trade between Finland and Japan.
Negotiations between Finland and Canada concerning the flights of Finnair to Montreal began in Helsinki. A contract was signed 18.5.
Speaking at a press conference, Prime Minister Martti Miettunen deplored the continuing deficit in Finland's trade with Poland. As a consequence of this state of affairs he referred also to the delay in the ratification of the KEVSOS-agreement between Finland and Poland.
Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Johannes Virolainen visited Poland. He met the chairman of the Polish Parliament Stanislaw Gucwa and Foreign Minister Emil Wojtaszek. Topics discussed were Finnish-Polish trade and fishing in the Baltic Sea.
The Finnish-Italian programme of activities on cultural exchange was signed in Rome.
Trade agreement between Finland and the Imperial Government of Iran.
Agreement between Finland and Greece for air services between and beyond their respective territories.
A Delegation of the Bulgarian Parliament arrived in Finland. It met President Kekkonen.
The delegation of
the Liberal People’s Party travelled to the German Democratic Republic in order
to take part in the 12th party congress of the Liberal Democratic Party of the GDR.
In an interview for "lzvestija” Prime Minister Miettunen noted that the spirit of the Belgrade Meeting must not be risked through mutual accusations.
In an interview for the quarterly "Vi i Norden”, President Kekkonen noted that Finland is still of the opinion that a Nordic nuclear-free zone would promote détente in Europe.
President Kekkonen discussed Finnish foreign policy at a meeting of SDP veterans. According to the President, the leading principles of Finland's policy in the North are mutual trust and cooperation with the USSR and good relations with the other Nordic countries. Kekkonen also repeated his famous statement that it is not insignificant from Finland's point of view with whom Norway has military cooperation with.
The six parties behind Kekkonen’s re-election (the Social Democratic Party, the Finnish People’s Democratic League, the Centre Party, the Coalition Party, the Swedish People’s Party and the Liberal People’s Party) signed a common proclamation on foreign policy. It stated that the main question in the presidential elections is maintaining the continuity of Finnish foreign policy, which shall be accomplished through the re-election of President Kekkonen.
In an interview for TASS, President Kekkonen noted that the Paris Peace Treaty and the FCMA Treaty placed Finnish-Soviet relations on the principles that were
confirmed multilaterally in CSCE Final Act.
Speaking at a meeting of the Friendship Society Finland — Soviet Union, Foreign Minister Keijo Korhonen demanded an open and active mind in economic relations between Finland and the USSR.
A delegation of the
Finnish Communist Party travelled to GDR as a guest of the Socialist Unity
Party of the GDR (SED).
President of the Federal Republic of Austria Rudolf Kirchschläger visited Finland and met President Kekkonen. President Kekkonen stated that the relations between the countries are good and that both countries have interests on the process of détente. Kirchschläger said that cooperation between the two countries could be developed in detail, e.g. in the sector of detente and EFTA.
Professor Bengt Broms was re-elected chairman of the committee examining the UN Charter and the position of the UN.
Soviet Prime Minister Aleksei Kosygin arrived in Finland on a 5-day friendship visit, during which he inaugurated in Loviisa the first Finnish nuclear power plant, made in cooperation with the USSR, and the Soviet Culture and Science Centre in Helsinki. The Loviisa plant shall have its II phase in function in 1979. There are two nuclear power plants being built in Olkiluoto: TVO 1 (ready in 1979) and TVO 2 (ready in 1981). These two are purchased from Sweden.
— Prime Minister Kosygin and President Kekkonen discussed economic questions between the two countries and current international problems. The joint communiqué stated that the Finnish policy of neutrality basing on the Paasikivi-Kekkonen line and the FCMA-Treaty, will guarantee the unshaken development of the relations between the two countries.
Negotiations between Finland and Egypt began, in Egypt. The Finnish delegation, led by Minister of Foreign Trade C.G. Aminoff signed a second paper contract and negotiated an agreement on economic, industrial and technical cooperation.
The Nordic Council's 25th anniversary plenary session began in Helsinki. During the opening day session, in the presence of President Kekkonen, questions concerning Nordic security were under lively debate. Prime Minister Miettunen, however, noted that this type of questions do not belong to the Council's agenda. The Nordic Investment Bank, emigration and Nordsatplan (the common Nordic radio and television satellite plan) were on the agenda. The session approved about 30 recommendations. (The recommendations do not bind the governments as do the decisions of the Nordic Ministerial Council).
Finland's monetary unit, the markka, was devaluated by 5.7 %. Sweden, Norway and Denmark had devaluated their monetary units 1.4. and Finland had to follow suit to prevent the competitiveness of Finland's exports from weakening.
The 29th anniversary of the FCMA Treaty was celebrated in Finland and the Soviet Union. The Heads of State sent each other telegrams and the countries exchanged delegations.
Agreement on the security of nuclear power stations built near the borders of Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark.
Turkish President Fahmi S. Korutürk visited Finland. He stated that although Finland and Turkey follow different lines in their foreign policy, they strive to the same main goals. Kekkonen underlined the importance of good relations between Finland and its neighbour countries, but added that Finland strives as much as possible to the constructive cooperation also with other states.
Speaking at the summit meeting of the EFTA countries Prime Minister Martti Miettunen said that economical realism has been our foremost principle when making agreements with capitalist as well as with socialist Countries. He also stated that Finland favours the beginning of a dialogue between different economic groupings in Europe.
Finland and Vietnam signed a framework agreement for development cooperation in Hanoi.
Speaking at the 70th anniversary meeting of the Central Organization of Finnish Trade Unions (SAK) in Tampere President Kekkonen said that the strike is beginning to be an obsolete weapon and in stead of it we ought to achieve effective enterprise democracy. — The President also proposed the establishment of a separate state-owned building company.
A delegation of the Finnish Communist Party (SKP) began its visit in Poland at the invitation of the Polish United Workers’ Party.
The meeting of the European national commissions for UNESCO began in Helsinki.
On his journey to China Minister of Foreign Trade Aminoff met Vice Prime Minister Sun Chien. Finland made a new offer to China concerning a copper smelting plant.
A Finnish trade delegation had talks in Abu Dhabi about increasing economic cooperation between Finland and the United Arab Emirates. Finland proposed a co-operation contract.
Agreement between Finland and Hong Kong on limiting Hong Kong's exports of certain garments to Finland.
A Delegation of the French National Assembly arrived to Finland. It met President Kekkonen.
A Finnish trade delegation in Nigeria held talks about supplying a tractor factory to Nigeria.
A Finnish parliamentary delegation took part as an observer in the CSCE debate of the Council of Europe's parliamentarians.
In a reply to the UN Secretary General Finland said that in the Special Session devoted to disarmament priority should be given to the most urgent problems, such as the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons and nuclear-free zones.
Chairman of SDP Sorsa and party secretary UIf Sundqvist returned from the Soviet Union, where they had spent a vacation and negotiation week at the invitation of the Soviet Communist Party (CPSU).
In a statement for the Yugoslavian periodical "Politika” President Kekkonen, in connection with President Tito's 85th anniversary, noted that Tito's great achievements as head of non-aligned countries' movement are known everywhere in the world.
Outokumpu Co (a state-owned mining firm) and the Turkish state-owned Etibank came to an agreement on cooperation in exploiting metals in Turkey.
The chief of the political department of the PLO Faruk Kaddumi arrived to Finland as a guest of the SDP, the SKP and the Centre Party. He also met President Kekkonen.
Reuter reported that Finland will triple her troops in Lapland and claimed that Finnish-Soviet relations have deteriorated. The Foreign Ministry and the Defence Ministry denied the claims. There were preparations for some changes in the organization of the national defence, but not as large as Reuter had reported. 1.12. The Ministry of Defence declared about the changes: a battalion of light infantry will be changed into a brigade of light infantry, and a battery of anti-aircraft defence will be moved from Tampere to Oulu, and some smaller changes will take place in troops in Southern- Finland. The previous re-organization took place in 1966. The reasons for changes included smaller age- groups, the increased second term of exercises and the politico-military reasons for changing the Lappish battalion to a brigade of different arms.
Miettunen’s minority government resigned after sitting for 225 days. The
resignation was preceded by a compromise in the "land package”.
The Paasikivi Society decided to give its support to President Kekkonen, who is an honorary member of the Society, and organized a campaign for him. President Kekkonen later spoke only in campaign meetings organized by the Society or the parties backing him.
Taking the floor for Finland at the meeting of the preparatory committee of the Special Session, Ambassador Jaakko Blomberg reminded the committee of two principles: 1) "as an essential element of détente, arms control and disarmament is imperative for the security of nations”, 2) "disarmament is imperative for the realization of the goals of the new international economic orders”. — Finland took part in the meeting as an observer.
Prime Minister Kalevi Sorsa’s new majority government was appointed. The portfolios were distributed as follows: the Centre Party (5), the Social Democratic Party (4), the Finnish People’s Democratic League (3), the Swedish People’s Party (1), theLiberal People’s Party (1), and one professional minister. The Cabinet was the 60th in independent Finland. Vice-Chairman of the Centre Party Paavo Väyrynen, 30, was appointed Foreign Minister dealing also with foreign trade.
President Kekkonen paid his 4th official state visit to USSR. During the visit a Long-term Programme for the Development and Intensification of Economic, Commercial, Industrial, and Scientific and Technical Co-operation between Finland and the USSR until 1990 was signed (see the article by Kari Möttölä). The communiqué concerning the visit, according to President Kekkonen, gives a credible picture in that the relations between the two countries are good, as are the prospects for the future. Both parties considered that regular personal contacts have become an expression of the high level of trust and mutual understanding prevailing between two countries and one of the most efficient forms of political cooperation. Views were exchanged on topical international problems. In the communiqué Finland's endeavour to apply a policy of neutrality for the benefit of international peace and security and for the maintenance of friendly relations with all countries was mentioned.
President Kekkonen visited the USSR and signed (18.5.) the long term Finnish-Soviet economic cooperation programme with General Secretary LI. Brezhnev (see the article by Kari Möttölä). President Kekkonen and Prime Minister Aleksei Kosygin signed an agreement on the participation of Finnish enterprises in the construction of the Kostamus ore-concentration complex in the USSR near the Finnish border. Finn-Stroi (a condominium of Finnish construction enterprises) and the Soviet Prommashimport signed a contract of 3 billion mk concerning building of nearly 200 buildings in Kostamus. Up to the autumn 1982 there shall be ready a mining combine, residences for 9 000 people and public buildings. Directly it creates about 5000 jobs, and indirectly almost 20000.
The representative of Finland spoke at the international conference for the peoples of Zimbabwe and Namibia in Maputo. He said that Finland condemns apartheid and referred to the Foreign Minister's statement about the necessity of a political solution to preclude the violence.
Members of the Coalition Party in Parliament warned their colleague Kullervo Rainio, who had publicly taken the side of Ahti M. Salonen, the presidential candidate of the Constitutional Party of Finland. The next day Rainio left the Coalition Party and later joined the Constitutionalists.
Rautaruukki (a state-owned steel firm) and the Soviet Tjazhpromexport concluded an agreement on cooperation in steel industry in third countries.
The second meeting of the Finnish-Mexican economic commission in Helsinki agreed that Finland shall continue the agreement on an export credit of 40 Mmk with Mexico.
At the meeting of the Nordic Ministerial Council on the Faroe Islands Finland, Sweden, Norway and Denmark signed an agreement on cooperation between border communes.
Agreement between Finland and Norway on fishing.
Finland established diplomatic relations with the Democratic Republic of Madagascar.
Wärtsilä Co. (a Finnish shipbuilder) and the Soviet Ministry for Shipbuilding signed an agreement concerning cooperation in the field of shipbuilding.
Swedish Prime Minister Thorbjörn Fälldin arrived to Finland for two days. In negotiations with Prime Minister Sorsa they agreed that the flow of Finnish emigration to Sweden should be restrained. 18.7. In an interview for the Swedish news agency TT, Prime Minister Sorsa stated that emigration between Finland and Sweden should be balanced and, if this fails, other acceptable means should be found to limit emigration from Finland. — 20.7. Prime Minister Sorsa made accurate his previous interview by stressing that no restrictive measures are being prepared. According to Sorsa no government can, however, endlessly watch its best labour force emigrate.
Kajaani Company and Datasaab-Valmet Company received two loans (8 and 2.5 Mmk) from the Nordic Investment Bank for planned Finnish-Swedish cooperation in the field of the electronics industry.
The joint commission on trade and technical-economic cooperation between the governments of Finland and Cuba concluded its meeting in Havana.
A delegation of the Diet of the GDR visited Finland and met President Kekkonen.
The Coalition Party
decided, after voting at its Party congress, to support the re-election of President
Kekkonen. The votes were 586 to 24.
The first trade agreement between Finland and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam was negotiated in Hanoi. It contains the principles covering trade between the countries and a list of the goods the countries want to exchange. Finland hopes to export to Vietnam machinery products and paper. Vietnam wants to export metals, gum and canned goods to Finland. The trade between countries has so far been very limited:
in 1976 Finnish exports to Vietnam totalled 4 Mmk and there were no Vietnamese exports to Finland.
Hungarian Prime Minister György Lázár visited Finland. He met Prime Minister Sorsa and President Kekkonen.
A delegation of the Centre Party visited Hungary and had discussions with the representatives of Hungarian Patriotic People’s Front.
The preparatory phase of the CSCE follow-up meeting began in Belgrade. The head of the Finnish delegation, Ambassador Esko Rajakoski, representing the previous host country was the only guest to take the floor.
The joint commission between Finland and the EEC held a meeting in Helsinki to discuss the export of Finnish paper and the credit policy.
Convention on the international regulations for preventing collisions at sea, 1972.
At its party congress, the Christian League of Finland nominated its chairman Raino Westerholm the presidential candidate of the party.
President Kekkonen participated in festivities in Norwegian Lapland where an emigration monument was unveiled.
The Council of Economic Organizations (EVA) published a survey according to which 2/3 of those interviewed considered market economy a good system. Only 4 % took a completely negative stand towards market economy.
Speaking at the review Conference of the Sea bed treaty in Geneve, Mr. Blomberg pointed to the inter-relationship between arms' technology and the military use of the sea bed. He regarded placing nuclear weapons on the sea bed as the greatest danger.
Foreign Minister Paavo Väyrynen led the Finnish delegation at the ministerial meeting of the OECD. He said that the improved situation in the balance of payments allowed Finland greater leeway than before. He also said that Finland has taken the doubling of its development aid as a "medium-range goal”. During the meeting talks were held with US Secretary of State Cyrus Vance.
The Finnish-Saudi-Arabian joint commission on trade agreed that Finland will begin to import oil from Saudi-Arabia directly.
Chairman of the West German SDP Willy Brandt arrived in Finland as a guest of chairman of the SDP Sorsa. President Kekkonen invited Chairman Brandt to lunch.
The abolition of customs between Finland and the EEC came to force. The abolition concerns the industrial products. Part of the goods were left on so-called retardation lists, and their customs duties will be removed gradually until the year 1985. The lists include Finland's paper and the EEC's textile and metal products. At the same time the removal of customs duties in trade between Finland and certain socialist countries, in the framework of the KEVSOS-agreement, which was negotiated parallel to the free-trade agreement with EEC in 1973, cme into force. Finland's retardation lists are identical with the lists with EEC, while the socialist countries' lists give priority to the metal industry.
While visiting Kajaani, President Kekkonen deplored in his speech doubts expressed in the press about the economic profitability of the Kostamus agreement. Kajaani is the capital of the province that will gain most from the Kostamus plan, Kostamus being just across the border.
The Peace Days of the North Cap began in Murmansk.
A Soviet passenger plane was hijacked to Finland. After the escape of the hostages, the hijackers, two men, surrendered on 12.7. Finland and the Soviet Union have an agreement from 1975 concerning hijackings. In accordance with this agreement the hijackers were handed over in 13.7 to Soviet authorities.
Agreement establishing the Inter-American Development Bank.
Finland recognized the Republic of Djibouti.
The Norwegian periodical "Ny Tid” claimed that a Norwegian Jack Helle in 1948—54 recruited Finns to spy on the Soviet Union for the benefit of Norway. Helle worked at the Norwegian Embassy in Helsinki. 27.7. In the same paper a former Officer of the Norwegian army said he had visited Finland and trained Finns to work as agents in the Soviet Union. According to the officer the then attaché of the Norwegian Embassy in Helsinki recruited the agents. 29.7. The Chief of Supo (Security police) Arvo Pentti confirmed the information about spying. Supo knew about the matter already in 1951. Three Finnish citizens were sentenced in 1952 and 1970 for this action. The two former officers of the Norwegian army were later prosecuted.
Air transport agreement between Finland and Turkey.
Assistant Foreign Secretary Frank Judd visited Finland. He met President Kekkonen, Prime Minister Sorsa and Foreign Minister Väyrynen.
President Kekkonen made an official visit to Iceland. In his speech the President said that Finland's sympathy is on Iceland's side in Iceland's fishing dispute. He also touched on Nordic security and cooperation and Finland's possibilities to fish in Iceland's waters.
Finnish-Soviet youth friendship festival began in Lahti. President Kekkonen and Soviet Head of State L. Brezhnev sent their greetings to the main occasion on 14.8. The participants of the festival presented an appeal to the youth of Europe to promote détente, peace, security and cooperation.
In an interview for the Norwegian paper "Adresseavisen” President Kekkonen noted that he didn't see any cause for difficulties between Finland and Norway. He supposed that a recent Finnish-Norwegian seminar could have cleared some misunderstandings.
Convention on the recognition of divorces and legal separations.
Romanian Prime Minister Manea Manescu visited Finland. He met Prime Minister Sorsa and President Kekkonen.
At their meeting in Stavanger, Norway, the Nordic Ministers of Culture and Education discussed Nordic radio and TV cooperation. 25.10. In a report to the Nordic Ministerial Council, the Ministry of Finance noted, that the Nordic radio and TV satellite will be timely at the earliest at the beginning of 1980's.
— 3.11. The Ministry of Commerce and Industry reported that Nordsat should be carried out only when technical and juridical programme- political and financial possibilities exist. — 12.12. The Ministry of Communications reported that the satellite broadcasts will cover areas also outside Finland. The foreign- relations implications of this problem should be solved first.
Wärtsilä Co. made an offer concerning 4 U.S. cost-guard cutters. The offer did not lead to an order.
— Wärtsilä has also notified its willingness to sell ships to the US for use in the great lakes. The then U S Ambassador in Finland Mark Austad had been active in the matter and the matter has been discussed in Congress. No decisions on the matter were made in 1977.
The Polish Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Culture Jozef Tejcma visited Finland.
Second Minister of Health and Social Affairs Olavi Martikainen said in the UN conference against apartheid in Lagos that Finland is expecting a resolution by the Security Council on the compulsory arms embargo against South Africa. He added that Finland deems, as do the other Scandinavian countries, that the Security Council should prohibit new foreign investments in South Africa.
The government of Finland decided to devaluate the markka by 3 %. It was accompanied by measures to stimulate the economy. The other Nordic countries had devaluated their monetary units some days earlier.
Finland established diplomatic relations with Papua—New Guinea.
Agreement on economic, industrial and technical cooperation between Finland and Egypt.
The English Minister of Social and Health David Ennais arrived in Finland.
The Cabinet summoned to Espoo a conference of 350 representatives from different branches of society to discuss the economic situation and ways to ameliorate it.
President Kekkonen visited the GDR. The host for the visit was Head of State and Party Leader Erich Honecker. President Kekkonen stressed equality in relations to both German states (Finland had recognized them at the same time in 1972). Finnish Foreign Minister Väyrynen met his colleague Oskar Fischer and stated that Finland might have new possibilities for exports in the sector of building. President Kekkonen stated that he was satisfied with the political and economic results of the visit. He said that he will visit the FRG in 1978. In an interview President Kekkonen denied the view that in the joint communiqué the GDR had defined Finland's policy of neutrality in a new way. The formulations may be different, said President Kekkonen, but substantially no changes had taken place.
According to official statistics, Finland's trade with the EEC during the 70s has doubled, but its share of total trade has decreased markedly. In the beginning of the 70s, the EEC's share was 43 % of imports and 45.5 % of exports, in 1976 the corresponding figures were 34.75 and 38.1 %. Trade with the EEC has continuously showed a deficit for Finland. During the same period the volume of Finland's trade with the EFTA countries has increased 2.6 - fold, and with the CMEA-countries trade has almost quadrupled.
At the UN conference on Desertification in Nairobi. Finland stressed the significance of forest planting in preventing desertification.
A delegation of the Czechoslovakian Federation Parliament arrived in Finland. It met also President Kekkonen.
Agreement between Finland and Hong Kong on limiting and controlling Hong Kong's exports of certain garments to Finland.
Agreement between Finland and Macao on limiting and controlling Macao's exports of certain garments to Finland.
Neste Company (a state-owned oil company) announced that it had agreed with England to buy English crude oil. It was supposed that the amount of English oil will cover about 6 % of Finland's annual oil import.
Norwegian Crown Prince Harald opened a Norwegian-Finnish economic conference, in Helsinki.
Minister of Trade and Industry Rantala visited Hungary. He stated that the KEVSOS agreement between the countries has greatly increased trade. He referred also to the possibilities for joint deliveries to the third countries.
At its extra party congress the Constitutional Party of Finland nominated Ahti M. Salonen as its presidential candidate.
Finland was elected a member of the Council of the International Civil Aviation Organization for three years in Montreal.
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs declared that the Finnish contingent on Cyprus will be withdrawn by October 1977 after 13 years. The reason was, said major-general Aimo Pajunen, that the limited resources shall be directed in a better way: now Finland has better possibilities to send a contingent where it is needed more than in Cyprus. — There is a Finnish contingent on Sinai. —3.10. Foreign Minister Väyrynen considered it possible that a UN peace-keeping force of 4 000 men with a Finnish contribution will be sent to Namibia.
Finland presented Tanzania with an extensive plan on using Waterresources. Finland is also ready to take part in executing and financing the plan.
Agreement between Finland and the USSR on Cooperation in the Construction of a Dressing Combine for Ferrous Minerals at Kostamus.
In the leading article "Kekkonen is a danger for Finland” the Swedish paper "Expressen” recognized Kekkonen's achievements in the field of foreign policy, but claimed that in the domestic field his dominance had grown too great. The article aroused great attention and "cowering” was discussed in public. — On 29.9.
"Expressen” repeated the claim about the "cowerings” of Finns in front of Mr. Kekkonen: Finland is full of timid children.
Czechoslovakian Minister of Work and Social Affairs Michael Stancel visited Finland.
President Kekkonen attended the christening ceremony of Princess Victoria of Sweden.
In an interview for Danish newspapers, President Kekkonen — referring to "Expressen's” recent writing — said that he has maybe sat on his post for too long, but he has always respected democracy. About Denmark's membership in the EEC he noted, that it hasn't harmed Nordic cooperation. President Kekkonen also stressed, that a formal treaty should be made on a Nordic nuclear-free zone.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen said in the UN General Assembly that the most important questions at the moment are détente, disarmament and development.
Austrian Minister of Justice Christian Broda visited Finland.
The Finnish cellulose industry announced that it will join the price competition on the world market of cellulose, which its rivals had opened.
President Kekkonen took part in the 500th anniversary celebration of Uppsala University. He received an honorary degree of Doctor of Law. On 1.10 President Kekkonen inauguratedthe Suomi (Finland) -building in Stockholm. In an interview for the Swedish Radio, the President said that Swedish business could build light industry in Finland.
Economic cooperation between Finland and Sweden was discussed in Stockholm between governmental delegations. The topics discussed included possibilities for cooperation in the field of electronics and joint activities in third countries.
The CSCE follow-up meeting was opened in Belgrade. Ambassador Jaakko Iloniemi took the floor for Finland on 5.10. In the view of the Finnish government the main task of the conference is to secure the continuity of the CSCE process. He also said that European detente has extended its beneficial influence to the outside world in providing a fund of confidence essential in order to allow those states who have the best possibilities and thus the greatest responsibilities on the world scene to work together for peaceful solutions. Progress has not been uniform in all fields comprised by the decisions undertaken by our political leaders, he said and continued that while we recognize this as a fact, we should remember that the initial positions of the participating states have also been very different and diversified. Parallel and simultaneous progress has not been, and may not even be, a realistic thing to expect. Of the various items to be discussed he emphasized disarmament and the environment.
Hungarian Minister of Culture Imre Pozsgay visited Finland and met President Kekkonen.
President Kekkonen paid an official visit to Denmark, at Queen Margaretha's invitation. In an interview for Danish TV, he discussed Finland's attitude to the EEC. Kekkonen said that Finland had the impression that EEC is not a mere trade alliance. According to the President, political matters should be decided elsewhere than in trade alliances.
Taking the floor at the ministerial meeting of the EFTA Foreign Minister Paavo Väyrynen drew attention to new restrictions in international trade, especially harmful for smaller countries. In some cases protective measures may be unavoidable to prevent serious crises in the domestic market. These measures, however, should be selective.
Agreement between Finland and Italy on international transport by road.
President Kekkonen started his election campaign in Hämeenlinna, where he discussed parliamentarianism and the president's powers. 27.11. President Kekkonen spoke at an occasion organized by the Paasikivi Society about the war guilt question, which was one of the critical issues in Finnish-Soviet relations after the war.
- In Pori 31.11, President Kekkonen said that the president represents continuity in Finnish foreign policy. He argued against the accusation that he had wanted to concentrate to himself the handling of the important relations with the USSR and thus secure his "irreplaceability”. He said that the cooperation between Finland and the USSR is so extensive that the President can't take care of the entire network of relations.
- 11.12. In Vaasa President Kekkonen spoke about the significance of good relations between Finland and the USSR for the security of Nordic countries. Sweden's neutrality and the restrictions set by Norway and Denmark to their NATO-membership are, according to President Kekkonen, very important to Finland. He said that the failure of NORDEK did not undermine the grounds for Nordic cooperation.
- 12.12. In Tampere president Kekkonen spoke about Finland's role in the CSCE and the situation in Europe.
- 17.12. In Korpilampi President Kekkonen discussed Finnish foreign policy in general.
- 18.12. In Helsinki President Kekkonen spoke about the workers' movement in Finland and its support of the FCMA Treaty.
- 27.12. In Mikkeli at an electoral occasion organized by the Centre Party Kekkonen said that the party should ensure the continuity of the Finnish foreign policy.
Chairman of the Chilean Radical Party Anselmo Sule arrived in Finland at the invitation of SDP.
The Finnish-Iranian joint commission had its second meeting in Teheran. Negotiations covered cooperation on forestry, wood processing and the building industry.
A delegation of the CPSU led by the secretary of the Central Committee B.N. Ponomarev arrived in Finland at the invitation of the Finnish Communist Party.
A high-level symposium on Finnish-Soviet scientific-technical and economic cooperation was organized in Helsinki.
Polish Minister of Finance Henryk Kisiel visited Finland.
Hungarian Minister of Health Emil Schultheisz visited Finland.
Finland introduced a draft resolution on non-proliferation in the UN General Assembly's Political Committee. The Finnish draft stressed the central role of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, and asked for all the countries to join the treaty or at least accept equivalent safeguards on nuclear activities. It also emphasized international cooperation in peaceful uses of nuclear energy and especially the interests of developing countries. as well as the importance of nuclear disarmament for non-proliferation efforts. The draft stressed the responsibility of the countries selling nuclear energy. — 21.11. The draft, amended after consultations, was adopted by the Committee. — 12.12. The UN General Assembly adopted the resolution by a vote of 111:2:16.
Ambassador Ilkka Pastinen, in the UN debate on Namibia, promised Finland's readiness to help promote the transition to majority rule in Namibia and to give aid to independent Namibia.
Finland gave an official statement in the UN on the situation in South Africa. The Finnish government expressed deep concern over the recent decision of South Africa to abolish the last possibilities of the African people to express their views on the inhuman apartheid policy in the country and strive peacefully towards the equality of races. As a member state of the UN South Africa, according the statement, bears deep responsibility of its actions. Consequently the international community has the right to demand that the government of South Africa withdraw its decision.
In a Gallup survey, 85%of those interviewed thought that the foreign policy of Finland was well conducted, 7 % thought it was badly conducted and 8% had no opinion. The Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance between Finland and the USSR was regarded as a positive thing by 80% of those interviewed. In another Gallup survey, over 90 % of Finns considered Finland a very or rather secure place to live in, although, on the other hand, more than half saw the world developing towards more insecure times.
Speaking on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the October Revolution in Helsinki President Kekkonen emphasized Lenin's role in recognizing Finnish independence and observed that Finnish-Soviet economic relations are of great importance in helping Finland in her economic difficulties.
Prime Minister of Luxembourg Gaston Thorn visited Finland and met President Kekkonen.
Chairman of the SDP Sorsa spoke at the joint symposium of SDP and the CPSU about the role of the social democrats and their relations with Lenin.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen expressed his disapproval to the Swedish chargé d'affaires in Helsinki of a poster which a Swedish conservative student organisation had distributed in Stockholm. The poster denounced President Kekkonen. 2.11. The Swedish Government sent an explanation and regrets because of the incident.
The delegations of
SKP and SDP attended the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the October
Revolution in the USSR.
In Pori, President Kekkonen said that the president represents continuity in Finnish foreign policy. He argued against the accusation that he had wanted to concentrate to himself the handling of the important relations with the USSR and thus secure his "irreplaceability”. He said that the cooperation between Finland and the USSR is so extensive that the President can't take care of the entire network of relations.
Ambassador Pastinen said that Finland condemns all illegal acts against civil air traffic. He paid attention to the role of domestic legislation in fighting hijackings.
The Foreign Ministry announced that Finland aims at doubling her assistance to developing countries in the next five years.
a) Multilateral cooperation
In 1977 Finland was a member o the Councils of UNDP, UNICEF, FAO, the UNCTAD Trade and Development Board and the UNIDO Industrial Council. Finland also was an observer in ECOSOC, and was elected a member of ECOSOC. Multilateral aid, totalling 81 Mmk, was appropriated as follows: UNDP 21.5 Mmk, social development programmes 5.6 Mmk, international institutions for financing development 37 Mmk, food programmes 11 Mmk and humanitarian aid 5.4 Mmk.
b) Bilateral Cooperation
Bilateral aid, which totalled 112 Mmk was allocated as follows: development credits 28 %, agriculture, fishing and forestry 26 %, industry and economic infrastructure 25 %, health, education and social development 14 %, administration and services 14 % and others 3 %. The main recipients were: Tanzania 33 %, Zambia 21 % and Mozambique 11%.
A Finnish trade delegation travelled to Pyongyang in North- Korea to negotiate the possibilities for continued trade between the two countries. The paper machine delivered in 1974 by Finland, for which North-Korea has not yet paid, was also discussed.
The Interior Ministry
decided to ban four fascist organizations. The decision said that the organizations
had acted in violation of the law and the Paris Peace Treaty (paragraphs 8 and
IS), organized militarily and made aggressive propaganda, which was directed
against the USSR and other nations. — The leader of the organizations
immediately founded new ones.
In addition to the delegations of SKP, SDP, trade unions and the Friendship Society President Kekkonen took part in the 60th anniversary celebrations of the October Revolution.
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry published statistics on the development of Finland's energy economy in 1960—1976. The statistics showed that the share of oil has increased and the share of domestic energy sources has declined.
In Belgrade Finland presented a joint draft of the nine neutral and nonaligned countries concerning disarmament.
The General Assembly extended by one year the term of Martti Ahtisaari as UN Commissioner for Namibia.
A Finnish economic-industrial delegation visited Australia and New Zeeland.
Minister of Trade and Industry Rantala took part in the 5th meeting of the joint commission between Finland and the CMEA in Berlin.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen presented in Parliament the report of the government on the long-term economic cooperation programme between Finland and the USSR. Väyrynen expected special efforts from Finnish business circles in the implementation of the programme. The lack of competitiveness of the Finnish economy must not become an obstacle to the development of our exports, he said, and continued that the results are not guaranteed by the programme, but that they depend on how Finland can utilize the possibilities opened up by the programme. In the following debate, most parliamentarians took a positive stand toward the matter and emphasized its importance.
Ambassador Pastinen said that Finland supports the Security Council resolution banning arms exports to South Africa. The possible plans of South Africa to develop nuclear explosives have according to Pastinen brought about new dimensions to the Situation.
A programme concerning the cultural exchange between Finland and GDR was signed in Helsinki.
Chairman of the SDP Sorsa attended the party congress of SPD in Hamburg
Agreement between Finland and Canada for air services between and beyond their respective territories.
Arson was committed against the printers "Kursiivi”, where a left-wing communist newspaper is printed. The incident led to a trial against members of the prohibited fascist organizations.
Soviet Minister for Foreign Trade Nikolai Patolitshev arrived in Helsinki to attend the 18th session of the Finnish-Soviet economic commission.
The Finnish Parliament, almost unanimously, asked for more effective economic sanctions against South Africa and more support to the liberation movements.
Finland established diplomatic relations with Barbados, Fiji, Ghana and Jamaica.
Chairman of the Council of Ministers A.N. Kosygin visited Finland in order to participate in the celebrations of the Finnish Independence Day 6.12.
met Prime Minister Aleksei Kosygin, leader of the Soviet delegation.
Finland celebrated the 60th anniversary of her independence. Delegations from 25 countries came to Helsinki, including representatives from the USSR, the United States, the Nordic countries and many European countries.
The Nordic countries made a proposal demanding inquiry into the violations against human rights in Uganda. Because of the strong resistance of the African countries the proposal was withdrawn.
Cabinet gave Parliament a motion for a bill giving the Cabinet special powers to regulate prices and incomes until February 1979 and motions for other laws to stimulate the economy. — 22.12. Parliament approved the bill after voting (169-15). The minority wing of communists and the Finnish Rural Party voted against the bill.
Finland and Sweden agreed on Sweden's new fishing limits and fishing rights in the Baltic.
Ambassador Pastinen said in UN General Assembly that the solution in Zimbabwe must be based on free elections. Finland condemns the aggression of South-Rhodesia against independent African countries. The Security Council should in Finland's opinion fill up the gaps in the sanctions.
A delegation of the Romanian Communist Party arrived in Finland at the invitation of the SKP.
Chairman of SDP Sorsa
and party secretary Sundqvist travelled to Tokyo to take part in the Socialist
International. Sorsa also met Japanese Prime Minister Takeo Fukuda.
Negotiations between Finnair and SAS commenced in Helsinki on an agreement allowing Finnair's Atlantic flights landings at Copenhagen. A solution could not be reached and the talks were postponed until January 1978.
Finland established diplomatic relations with the Comoro Islands.
Parliament approved the budget of 37.6 billion marks for the year 1978. The Foreign Ministry (including funds for development cooperation) was given 476 Million marks. The Ministry of Defence got 1,804 Mmk.
Agreement establishing the International Fund for Agricultural Development.
A Soviet Government delegation led by the first deputy to the Chairman of the Council of Ministers N.A. Tihonov visited Finland and took part in the 60th anniversary of the recognition of Finnish independence by the Lenin government. President Kekkonen met the delegation on 31.12.
Finland and Zambia signed an agreement for development cooperation for 1978—80 in Lusaka.
The Ministry of Defence and the English Hawker-Siddeley signed an agreement concerning 50 primary training planes. The cost is 960 Mmk and the planes shall be delivered by 1980. They shall compensate the earlier French Fouga Magister planes. The deal contains a series of counter- purchases made by England from Finland. There was lively debate in Finnish Parliament about the deal, and part of the left was against it.
Agreement between Finland and Mongolia on scientific and technical cooperation.