Economic matters were central in President Kekkonen's New Year speech. He stressed the importance of the ability to compete in international trade for Finland.
The presidential candidate of the Constitutional Party Ahti M. Salonen said in a TV-interview that Finland is down with censorship and domination of president. According to Salonen Finland's activity as a doctor in international politics has been too grandiose.
In Helsinki at a campaign meeting organized by SDP, President Kekkonen said, departing from the original text of his speech, that the forthcoming election resembles a popular referendum in which the citizens are asked whether they want to maintain the course in foreign policy which we call our official foreign policy to take some other road, about which nothing good is known — on the contrary. This was regarded as an appeal to activate the voters, for recent surveys had predicted a low voter turnout.The other candidates, except for Ahti M. Salonen, did not approve Mr. Kekkonen's version of referendum. They considered that there were not differences of opinion between the candidates on the basic questions of Finnish foreign policy.
The Presidential candidate of the Finnish Rural Party Veikko Vennamo said in a TV-interview that in the FCMA-Treaty negotiations in 1948 Mr. Kekkonen, then a M.P. and member of the Finnish delegation had approved Stalin's proposal before it was discovered that President Paasikivi took another line which was later approved as the wording of the treaty. Vennamo didn't reveal his sources. 11.1. Under-Secretary of State Keijo Korhonen, former professor of political history in the University of Helsinki, said that Vennamo gave a fully false description of the FCMA-Treaty negotiations.
The first framework agreement on trade between Finland and Vietnam was signed in Hanoi.
Speaking in Kotka President Kekkonen repeated that the election was a popular referendum. He stressed, that according to the Constitution of Finland the election is a question of foreign policy.The presidential candidate of the Christian League Raino Westerholm stressed in a TV-interview, that he supports Finland's foreign policy, but cannot approve Finland's attitude towards the Middle East. According to Westerholm Finland has not in its UN policy honoured the principle that every country has a right to live in the case of Israel.
Centre Party Chairman Mr. Virolainen said in an interview that a sufficient condition for the Coalition Party to participate in the Cabinet is that the party supported Kekkonen's re-election. Virolainen said that the Centre Party also needs a wall to lean on since SDP is having SKDL onleft. 30.1. Prime Minister Sorsa denied the possibility of the Coalition Party's participation in the Cabinet.
In a TV-interview President Kekkorien said that a new period of political groupings will trample the Christian League under foot. The President refuted Vennamo's claims concerning the FCMA-Treaty negotiations and said that Vennamo had deliberately made false conclusions. Of the presidential elections Kekkonen noted that would the voter turn out be very low, people abroad would believe that the policy pursued is not popular among the people.
The Finnish-Iraqi economic commission concluded its fifth meeting in Bagdad.
In the presidential electoral elections, 260 of the 300 mandates went to the six parties supporting President Kekkonen. Mandates were distributed as follows (percentual breakdown of the votes given in brackets): SKDL 56 (18.2), SDP 74 (23.3), Centre Party 64 (19.5), Coalition Party 45 (14.7), the Swedish People's Party 13 (3.6) and the Liberal People's Party 8 (2.9). Kekkonen's voting bloc got 82.3 % of the votes which meant 57.9 % of the total enfranchised population. This was the biggest majority in presidential elections in Finland's history.The mandates of the opponents were distributed as follows: Westerholm (Christian League) 24 (8.8), Vennamo (Rural Party) 10 (4.7), Salonen (Constitutional Party) 6 (3.4), HaikaIa (Unity Party) — (0.8). For the first time in Finland's presidential elections the age limit was 18 and Finns living abroad were also allowed to vote. However, only 2% of the enfranchised Finns living abroad actually voted. In Finland the total voter turnout was 70.3% (in 1968 70.2 %). Of the parties behind Kekkonen only the Centre Party's support increased from the preceding elections, the Coalition Party was the biggest loser. The entire opposition received a total of 17.7 % of the votes, which was more than the Gallup polls had predicted.
Finland was reported as supporting Madrid for the place of the second follow-up meeting. The first follow-up meeting continued after a month's break in Belgrade.
Nordic Prime Ministers and the Speakers of the Nordic Council met in Stockholm and discussed the coming plenary session of the Nordic Council. A Nordic economic conference of representatives of governments and workers' and employers' organizations was considered in the meeting.
International convention on the simplification and standardization of customs procedures.
Finnish-Surinamian agreement on the abolition of visas.
A Centre Party delegation travelled to the Soviet Union at invitation of the CPSU.
An article on "Finlandization” by Professor Walter Laquer was published. He claimed that Finland is not an independent country in any acceptable meaning of this concept. The writing marked the opening of a debate lasting several months. The comments of Finnish papers were mainly critical. 21.4. American historian H. Peter Krosby tackled the debate in his article in the journal "Ulkopolitiikka”. He noted that Finland is not "Finlandized”, in spite of the suspicions of the west. According to Krosby, Finland's self-determination and independence are not constrained and Finland today is more democratic than before the Second World War. 6.9. Minister of Agriculture Virolainen discussed "Finlandization” in the 65th conference of the IPU. He said that Finland has nothing against the word, when used it as "terminus technicus”, but Finland doesn't approve of its use as a weapon in domestic politics or as a means of intimidation in the cold war between the greater powers.
The nine neutral and nonaligned countries presented in Belgrade a joint draft for a comprehensive solution in the talks that were in a standstill.
The number of the unemployed exceeded 200000. The worsening of the employment situation was unexpectedly rapid.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the 1978 regular session of Parliament President Kekkonen discussed the question of widening the economic powers of Parliament. He said that the Parliament should have the same sort of possibility to tackle the disturbances of the national economy as in other Western democracies. The President also noted that the Finnish government places great hopes to the UNGA's special session on disarmament.
The Finnish-Egyptian economic commission met in Helsinki. Negotiations covered increasing trade and making the structure more complex.
In an interview for "Kainuun Sanomat” President Kekkonen expressed his concern over the Finnish workers' striking at the Kostamus construction site in the Soviet Union near the Finnish border. At the time there were about 1600 Finns working in Kostamus building a town and a concentration combine.
Urho Kekkonen was elected to his fifth term as the President of Finland by a majority of 259 out of a total 300 electors. One of Kekkonen's electors switched camps giving his vote to Westerholm. President Kekkonen noted that the pursued foreign and reform policy received a firm vote of confidence from the Finnish people. Kekkonen began his new term on 1.3. At the completion of his fifth term Kekkonen will have been the President of Finland for 28 years. Kekkonen ran for President for the first time in 1950, when he was defeated by J.K. Paasikivi. In 1956 he won by the narrowest possible majority and was re-elected in 1962 and 1968. In 1973 Parliament passed an exceptional legislation prolonging Kekkonen's term by four years to the end of February 1978. See Robert Wihtol's article in the Yearbook of Finnish Foreign Policy 1977.
The government of Finland decided to devalue the Markka by 8 %. The devaluation was the third within a year totalling 18 %. The ministers of SDP (social democrats) and SKDL (people's democrats) opposed the measure and Prime Minister Sorsa submitted his Cabinet's resignation. During the negotiations led by Mr. Sorsa the Swedish People's Party left the five-party coalition.
1.3. Sorsa withdrew his resignation. No new Cabinet was appointed and the parties divided the portfolios as follows: SDP 4, the Centre Party 5, SKDL 3, the Liberal People's Party 2 and one civil servant minister.
The Nordic Council's 26th plenary session began in Oslo. Main issues in the session were economic questions and the plan for the Nordic Radio and Television satellite, Nordsat. The session approved 14 recommendations.
The Foreign Ministry gave a statement on Namibia in connection with the visit of the SWAPO delegation led by Chairman Sam Nujoma. According to the statement, Finland like the other Nordic countries supports a negotiated settlement within the UN framework and efforts to give Namibia independence during the year of 1978. The enlargement of the sanctions against South Africa was also stressed.
The OECD published its annual survey of the economic situation in Finland. It predicted that the year 1978 would be the fourth successive year of a low economic activity in Finland.
EEC agreed to concessions concerning Finland's paper exports. Finland's quota was not frozen as was planned but was raised by 5 %.
The Swedish daily "Svenska Dagbladet” wrote that the Soviet Union had brought six submarines equipped with nuclear warheads into the Baltic. The Foreign Minister of Sweden confirmed the information. Finnish Foreign Ministry noted that the existence of the submarines in the Baltic doesn't mean any significant change in the strategic situation of the North, as some coast-countries already have nuclear arms in their territory. The Foreign Ministry stressed in this connection that Finland's proposition for a Nordic nuclear- weapon-free zone is in force.
The Nordic Conservative Party secretaries met in Copenhagen. From Finland the Coalition Party and Swedish People's Party took part the meeting.
The CSCE follow-up meeting in Belgrade adopted its final document. Neutral and non-aligned countries expressed certain disappointment at the results of the meeting. The final statement of Finland, see Documentary. After returning to Finland the Chairman of the Finnish delegation Keijo Korhonen said that the Belgrade meeting cannot be labelled a failure. He stressed that the meeting served its purpose in that it discussed thoroughly the implementation of the Helsinki Final Act.
At their meeting in Oslo the Nordic Foreign Ministers agreed on a common programme of action against the apartheid system of South Africa. The programme included: banning or braking new investments in South Africa, negotiations on limiting Nordic production in South Africa, renouncing sports and cultural exchange and increasing Nordic aid to refugees and liberation movements.
In a reply to President Leonid Brezhnev's letter concerning the neutron bomb, President Kekkonen said that Finland's attitude towards the introducing of the neutron bomb as of every nuclear and mass destruction weapon is negative.
The extended meeting of the Nordic Council of Ministers agreed on proceeding the planning of the Nordsat. The Finnish representatives requested that in addition to direct broadcasting also "edited” broadcasting, which means that the satellite will transmit common Nordic programme in one channel, be examined. Minister of Communications Veikko Saarto (SKDL) noted that for Finland the Nordsat is also a foreign political matter, because the programme transmitted by Nordsat would be seen also in the Soviet Union.
Speaking in Helsinki Foreign Minister Väyrynen stated that the FCMA-Treaty has performed its task as the basic treaty in Finnish-Soviet relations.
In his statement for "Suomenmaa” Foreign Minister Väyrynen said that according to Finland's view the settlement in the Middle East should be based on the resolutions of the UN Security Council. The Palestinian's right to their own home country shall be recognized and Israel's right to live safely inside its borders shall be guaranteed.
The Soviet Union compensated to Finland the expenses caused by the hijacking of Soviet passenger plane in summer 1977, totally 402 567 Mk. The compensation was based on an agreement between Finnish and Soviet governments on cooperation in preventing hijackings of civil air-planes.
The government's energy report was introduced to the Parliament. One of the primary tasks of the energy policy was to reduce Finland's dependence on imported energy by introducing domestic energy resources. In 1977, imported energy cost 7 100 Mmk which was 23 % of the total import.
A CPSU delegation led Secretary of the Central Committee M.V. Zimjanin visited Finland at invitation of the SDP. This was in way a ten-year anniversary visit, party contacts between the CPSU and SDP were established in 1968 when SDP delegation led by Chairman Rafael Paasio visited the Soviet, Union.
Finland and GDR in an agreement, decided to double their trade within three years by 1980.
Finnish-Polish agreement on the reciprocal removal of obstacles to trade. Previously Finland had made similar KEVSOS-agreements with Bulgaria, Hungary, Czechoslovakia and GDR.
In his radio interview concerning the FCMA-Treaty President Kekkonen noted that developing cooperation with the Soviet Union is even more important as the international recession continues. He said that the military-political articles of the treaty continue to have a preventive effect. They have kept Finland outside strategic speculations, and this has stabilized the situation in the whole Northern Europe, said Kekkonen.
A Swede Karl-Göran Wickenberg was arrested after he had departed from Immola airport in Eastern Finland in a small airplane and had made a trip to the Soviet Union's side of the border. His intention had been to smuggle out of the Soviet Union Ljudmila Agapova, whose husband was in Sweden. 15.5. Wickenberg was given suspended sentence.
Finland established diplomatic relations with Yemen Arab Republic (North Yemen).
The 30th anniversary of the FCMA-Treaty was celebrated in Finland and the Soviet Union. The countries exchanged delegations on different levels. 4.4. The Soviet Governmental delegation, led by Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko arrived in Finland. In his speech in the main occasion in Helsinki President Kekkonen noted that the FCMA Treaty had passed the test of history. He also noted that none of the treaty's articles had lost their meaning, but the emphasis of practical co-operation has moved in the last few years into the fields of economics and culture. During the visit Finnish-Soviet relations and topical international problems were discussed.A Finnish Governmental delegation led by Prime Minister Sorsa took part in Moscow in the FCMA-Treaty celebrations.
A plea against the neutron bomb addressed to President Jimmy Carter was signed by 102 Finnish members of Parliament. They represented all parties except the Rural Party and the Constitutional Party.
Finland and Jordania signed an air transport agreement.
The speakers of the Nordic Council met in Stockholm and agreed on carrying out simultaneous interpretation permanently in the plenary sessions of the Nordic Council.
The Committee on Development Cooperation handed its report to Foreign Minister Väyrynen. The committee suggested that Finland increase development cooperation to 0.7 % of the GNP from 0.16 % (in 1977). See the article by Vilho Harle in this Yearbook.
Finland participated for the first time in the annual meeting of the Latin American Development Bank IDB, in Vancouver. Finland joined the IDB in 1977.
The Defence Ministry decided to enlarge a battalion of light infantry into a brigade in Lapland. This was part of the re-organization of land forces recommended by the Second Parliamentary Defence Committee.
The President appointed Commodore Jorma Haapkylä as the new Commander of the Navy.
The Disarmament Conference the Socialist International began Helsinki. At SDP's initiative from the US and Soviet Union were invited to address the Conference. Later the Socialist International established a working group for disarmament led by Mr. Sorsa.
At the UNGA's special session on Namibia Ambassador Pastinen stressed the importance of a sufficient UN presence in Namibia during the transition phase to independence.
Mr. Virolainen visited the GDR at the 30th anniversary of the German Democratic Peasant Party.
The third IPU conference on security and cooperation began in Vienna. Taking the floor for Finland Minister of Agriculture Virolainen said that the task of the conference is to demonstrate that the spirit of Helsinki was not a transitory phenomenon.
Negotiations between the US and the Soviet Union on the limitation of conventional arms transfers began in Helsinki.
Ambassador Richard Totterman's letter of rebuttal was published in the "Daily Telegraph”, which had claimed that the Soviet Union had helped the Finns to build military roads from east to the west in the Finnish Lapland. He noted that it's difficult to understand in whose interest it is to cast a shadow over the efforts of neutral Finland to keep outside of military alliances.
Amnesty International's Finnish Section gave the South African Ambassador an open letter in which Prime Minister Vorster was summoned to repeal the laws violating racial equality and to free all political prisoners. The plea was signed by 3300 individuals, 121 members of Parliament, many trade unions and student organizations.
President Kekkonen gave a lecture on European and Nordic security at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs in Stockholm. See Documentary.The other Nordic countries took a cautious stand towards Mr. Kekkonen's proposals. Sweden expressed its readiness to negotiate if the other countries concerned would take part. Denmark and Norway noted that there already exists a nuclear-free zone in the North. The Soviet Union had repeated its readiness in principle to guarantee the status of the zone.
The special session devoted to Disarmament of the UNGA began in New York. Foreign Minister Väyrynen travelled on 27.5. to New York, where he negotiated with Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko and Secretary General Kurt Waldheim.
Speaking at the Ministerial Council of EFTA Foreign Minister Väyrynen stressed the importance of free trade to Finland.
At the meeting of the Finnish-Indian economic commission in Helsinki promoting cooperation especially on forestry was discussed.
The first meeting of the Finnish- Soviet working group to prepare the guidelines for the next 5-year skeleton agreement (1981—85) and the continuation of the long term economic cooperation .programme ended in Helsinki.
In the joint Finnish-EEC commission meeting in Brussels, Finland's delegation expressed its dissatisfaction with the arrangement concerning steel prices.
The Finnish-Cuban joint commission on technical and economic cooperation met in Helsinki. A three- year sugar agreement was concluded at the meeting.
In his speech at the 60th anniversary of the military forces of Finland in Hämeenlinna, President Kekkonen stressed that the security of Finland depends in the first place on the maintenance of peace in our continent.
At the meeting of the Finnish-Mexican economic commission new cooperation possibilities were discussed.
A maritime transport agreement between Finland and the People's Republic of China.
Finnish-Soviet programme on cultural and scientific cooperation in the years 1978—1982.
Finnish-Indian agreement on limiting and controlling India's exports of certain garments to Finland.
Finnish-Vietnamese trade agreement.
Negotiations between the US and the Soviet Union on anti-satellite weapons began in Helsinki.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen, in a reply in Parliament, said that a Lebanese student of Kurdish origin had to leave Finland on 7.5. and his return was declined because his permission to stay had run out. According to newspapers, the pressure from the Embassy of Iraq to expel the student had affected the authorities' decision.
In his interview for the Swedish paper "Svenska Dagbladet” Under-Secretary of State, Keijo Korhonen said that the results of the session were not as substantial as expected but remained mainly positive.President Kekkonen stated that his Stockholm proposal for the nuclear- free zone and arms control measures need not be his last word. He stressed the importance of the great powers' participation in the negotiations concerning Nordic security. After the Nordic countries had agreed on the zone, the great powers could, according to Mr. Kekkonen, give it the so- called negative security guarantees.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen took part in the 19th session of the joint Finnish-Soviet economic commission in Moscow.
Speaking at the OECD ministerial meeting in Paris Foreign Minister Väyrynen expressed his concern on the spread of protectionism in the world trade.
In an interview for "Suomenmaa” Foreign Minister Väyrynen said that Centre Party has been central conducting Finland's foreign policy. Väyrynen noted that the party's position has not been weakened by fact that subsequently most of parties have began to support official foreign policy of the country, the Paasikivi-Kekkonen line.
The writings and statements of Ilkka-Christian Björklund, M.P. from SKDL, concerning Eurocommunism aroused lively debate especially among the socialists and communists on different models of socialism. The majority-wing of the communists considered the debate as useful, but the left-wing communists expounded it as an attack against the Soviet Union and socialist countries.
The absence from the voting of the representatives of the Finnish Government when the mandate of Chile's delegation was on the agenda at the ILO Conference was criticized in Finland. The communists accused the Cabinet of having changed Finland's foreign policy line in favour of Chile's junta. The Foreign Ministry declared that the action had based on the rules of the ILO, according to which a case once concluded, could not be taken up again. Chile's case was discussed in 1977. 6.7. Prime Minister Sorsa confirmed that Finland had not changed its attitude towards Chile's junta.
Finland and Canada signed an. agreement on extradition following a crime.
In an interview for "Suomen Kuvalehti” Prime Minister Sorsa said that SDP Strives seriously for that the successor to President Kekkonen is a social democrat.
A CPF delegation headed Second Chairman Sinisalo visited Soviet Union at the invitation of the CPSU.
The Finnish Foreign Ministry was founded 60 years ago.
Finnish-Swedish fishing agreement on the right on each other's fishermen to fish in the other's fishing waters.
Finnish-Swedish fishing-zone agreement.
Finland established diplomatic relations with the Republic of Botswana.
Finnish enterprises concluded an agreement worth several hundreds of millions marks on building a congress palace, designed by architect Heikki Siren, in Bagdad.
Finland recognized the Solomon Islands.
Agreement between Finland and Hong Kong on limiting and controlling Hong Kong's exports of certain garments to Finland.
Six Soviet Mig-23 fighter jet planes took part in an air show in Finland. It was the first time this plane was seen outside the Warsaw-Pact countries.
In hit statement for the Soviet TV and radio in Connection with the third anniversary of the CSCE Foreign Minister Väyrynen noted that the time since has proved it impossible to advance in political détente in isolation from other developments. He stressed the necessity of military détente.
In his article, published by the periodical "Europäische Hefte” in the FRG, Prime Minister Sorsa noted that realization of human rights is an essential part of peace.
In connection with the 10-year anniversary of the Saimaa Canal Minister of Communications Saarto said that the final breakthrough of the canal traffic will probably take place during the next ten-year period. The agreement on the leasing and reconstruction of the Soviet side of the canal was signed in 1962 and the canal was opened in 1968.
Air traffic agreements between Finland and Norway, Sweden and Denmark.
Finland and the Soviet Union signed an agreement on the legal protection and assistance in civil, family and criminal affairs.
A delegation of the CPF travelled to Bulgaria at the invitation of the CPB.
Chrysler and Saab-Valmet signed a contact on assembling Chrysler cars in Uusikaupunki, Finland, from the beginning of March 1979. This meant hundreds of new jobs for the Finnish car industry.
Taking the floor for Finland at the UN's World conference to combat racism and racial discrimination in Geneva Ambassador Matti Cawén stressed that activities against racial discrimination concentrate on resisting the apartheid policy of South Africa. The conference ended on 28.8. in a disagreement because of the anti-Zionist parts included in the final document. Protesting these 14 Western countries walked out of the conference. Four countries voted against the document, among them Finland. According to Ambassador Cawén, Finland cannot accept placing Zionism abrest with racism.
In his statement to "Kansan Uutiset” Minister of Education Kalevi Kivistö (SKDL) said that the so-called "edited alternative” of Nordsat must be thoroughly examined before a decision is made.
Minister of Health and Social Affairs Pirkko Työläjärvi (SDP) proposed in the North Cap Conference in Alta, Norway, the establishment of a Nordic investment fund.
The Nordic Council of Ministers met in Stockholm. The main issue in the meeting was Nordsat. The Council decided that the report on the radio and TV satellite be ready by June, 1979. On the demand of the Finnish representatives the Council agreed on an examination the so-called "edited alternative”.
Finland signed together with other Nordic countries supplementary ECS-agreement concerning universal information communication satellite.
The Nordic Centre Parties met in Helsinki.
At their meeting in Stockholm the Nordic Foreign Ministers extended the sanctions towards the apartheid policy of South-Africa by adopting a compulsory visa to the citizens of South-Africa.
The Nordic Social Democratic Party and Trade Union leaders met Copenhagen.
President Kekkonen travelled to the Soviet Union on a 4-day friendship visit, which was his 33rd visit to the Soviet Union. President Kekkonen and his host Prime Minister Kosygin discussed new cooperation projects in Karelia. President Kekkonen described the visit as very important. In commenting President Kekkonen's latest proposals for the Nordic nuclear-weapon-free zone, Prime Minister Kosygin said that the Soviet Union is ready to guarantee such a zone together with other nuclear-weapon countries.
The sixth meeting of the economic commission between Finland and Iraq began in Helsinki.
Ambassador Pastinen was elected the chairman of the UNGA's First Committee.
Finland was elected in the Administrative Council of the IAEA.
International coffee agreement from 1976.
Agreements on limiting and controlling Singapore's and Macao's exports of certain garments to Finland.
Foreign Minister Väyrynen travelled to New York to take part in the UNGA. He said that Finland will concentrate on détente, disarmament, problems of Southern Africa and promoting NIEO. Speaking in the general debate on 28.9 he said that the oppression of the great majority of the people in Southern Africa is a continuous challenge to the UN's credibility.
The substitution of the Air Force DC-3 transport planes rose to the fore when 15 people died in an accident involving this plane type. Minister of Communications Saarto proposed that new planes be bought from the Soviet Union. Foreign Minister Väyrynen said that planning was in progress.
Speaking in Tampere Prime Minister Sorsa said that Finland approves without reservations the NIEO Resolutions.
Finland and Belgium signed an air traffic agreement in Helsinki.
Finnish-Turkish agreement on international transport by road.
Agreements between Finland and Iraq and Czechoslovakia on cooperation in tourism.
Finland recognized Tuvalu.
Minister of Defence Taisto Tähkämaa (Centre Party) in an answer to a question in Parliament denied that the Soviet Minister of Defence Ustinov had proposed joint military exercises between Finnish and Soviet armed forces, as had been claimed in some foreign newspapers. The M.P. putting the question, J. Juhani Kortesalmi (Rural Party) also paid attention to writings of the minority communists' "Tiedonantaja” putting forward joint exercises as necessary part of Finnish-Soviet relations. See Documentary.
A Soviet coast-guard cutter arrested and searched a Finnish trawler in international waters. Later the Soviet authorities said that they will take measures that such an incident will not be repeated.
Finnish-Yugoslavian agreement on international transport by road.
In his speech at the EFTA Consultative Committee Foreign Minister Väyrynen held it understandable that many countries strive to protect their market and industry from disturbances. What is problematic, however, is that protectionist measures often are introduced unilaterally.
Speaking at the 20th Unesco Conference in Paris Minister of Education Kivistö said that Finland supports the idea to create a new international information order, which aims at people's equality in this field.
The joint commission between Finland and Saudi-Arabia concluded its second meeting in Riyadh.
Finland and Hungary signed an agreement on preventing double taxation.
Prime Minister Sorsa discussed with the representatives of the US administration on his way to Vancouver to the meeting of the Socialist International.
In a CSCE expert conference on the peaceful settlement of disputes Chairman of the Finnish delegation Esko Rajakoski said that European security would be enhanced by a system of the peaceful settlement of international disputes.
According to a survey, 84 % of those interviewed thought that the foreign policy of Finland was well conducted and 77 % regarded the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance as a positive thing.
In a Gallup survey, the Chairman of the Board of the Bank of Finland Mauno Koivisto was the overwhelmingly most popular candidate to succeed Mr. Kekkonen as President. Of those interviewed 38 % supported Koivisto, 10 % Prime Minister Sorsa and 8 % Minister of Agriculture Johannes Virolainen and 7 % Dr. Ahti Karjalainen, both of them from the Centre Party.
Speaking on the occasion of the 61st anniversary of the October Revolution Minister of Finance Paul Paavela (SDP) stressed the importance of making the Finnish- Soviet trade more complex.
Convention on the prohibition of military or any other hostile use of environmental modification techniques.
The Parliament authorized unanimously the government to take a 300 Mmk loan from the Soviet Union to acquire "special equipment” in the years 1979—80. The equipment was SA-3 missiles, to improve the air defence of Helsinki.
In his interview to a Norwegian paper "Dagbladet” President Kekkonen noted that relations between Finland and Norway are good although the Norwegians don't always understand the Finns. In the second part of the interview published on 20.11. President Kekkonen refuted the claims that the Soviet Union had proposed joint military exercises between Finland and the Soviet Union.
The meeting of the joint Finnish-CMEA commission began in Helsinki.
In a Gallup-survey concerning Nordsat 47 % of those replied supported direct broadcastings, 26 % supported the "edited alternative” and 14 % said that the undertaking should be given up.
Ambassador Richard Müller said that Finland demands that the mandatory arms embargo be expanded by other sanctions against South Africa.
The 20th protocol of the joint Finnish-Soviet economic commission was signed in Helsinki.18.12. Finn Stroi Co. (a condominium of Finnish construction enterprises) made an offer to Soviet Prommasimport concerning the third phase of Svetogorsk cellulose and paper complex in the Soviet Union. At the time, some 1400 Finns were working in Svetogorsk with the second phase of this Finnish-Soviet cooperation project.
Convention on the prevention and punishment of crimes against internationally protected persons including diplomatic agents.
Defence Minister Tähkämaa visited the Finnish UN contingent troops in Sinai. He also discussed with Israeli and Egyptian Defence Ministers.
In the periodical "Kanava” pen name Jun Komissarov presented a Soviet view towards a Nordic nuclear- weapon-free zone. According to Komissarov, the Soviet Union is ready to guarantee the status of the zone but not to include its own territory into the zone. See Komissarov's article in this Yearbook.
President Kekkonen paid an official state visit to Spain. In an interview given during the trip he noted that a certain noticeable softening has taken place in other Nordic countries' views towards the Nordic nuclear-weapon-free zone. During the visit President Kekkonen negotiated with King Juan Carlos and Prime Minister Suarez. He hoped for more active economical cooperation between the countries. In connection with CSCE follow-up he proposed governmental contacts between the CSCE states in the preparation of the meeting in Madrid.
The committee on foreign affairs of the Parliament proposed the consideration of suspending diplomatic and economic relations with South Africa.
In a Gallup survey, published by "Helsingin Sanomat”, 18 % of Finns wished that Finland should be developed to a more socialist direction, 42 % considered the present conditions as suitable and 34 % wanted to improve the market economy orientation. According to the survey, opinions differing from the party's official line were most common among those who voted the parties of the Left.
The Parliament approved the fourth additional budget for the year, in which the government requested funds to order Mig-2 Ibis fighters and anti-aircraft missiles from the Soviet Union. The value of the purchase was 308.5 Mmk.
In their statement the Nordic countries rejected as invalid the elections in Namibia organized by South Africa against the UN's stand and public opinion of the world.
Agreements between Finland and Belgium, Romania and Tanzania on preventing double taxation.
Finnish-Hungarian agreement on cooperation in the fields of health care, medical science and social welfare.
Finnish-Albanian trade agreement.
Finnish-Soviet credit agreement.
In a Gallup survey on foreign policy published by "Helsingin Sanomat” the share of those satisfied with the way Finnish foreign policy was conducted had decreased and the share of those thinking it was falling too much to the East had increased from a similar survey six years earlier. The results were (1972 figures in brackets: foreign policy conducted well 55 % (67), too much to the West 3 % (4), too much to the East 34 % (20). The results of the survey launched a lively debate which went on for several months. Attention was given to the methodology of surveys, the concept of neutrality implicit in the questions and the conclusions to be drawn. Another survey, published in November, had given much higher ratings of satisfaction with the country's foreign policy.
The General Assembly extended by one year the term of Ambassador Martti Ahtisaari as the UN commissioner for Namibia. He was first appointed in 1976.