Nordic cooperation aims to promote common Nordic interests and values. Official Nordic cooperation takes place through the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers. The Nordic Council of Ministers celebrates 50 years this year.
Nordic cooperation involves Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland as well as the self-governing territories Åland, Greenland and the Faeroe Islands.
The Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers, leading this work, rotates on an annual basis. Finland holds the Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers in 2021. Finland aims to uphold the vision of Nordic cooperation acknowledged in 2019 ‘The Nordic region will become the most sustainable and integrated region in the world in 2030’. Finland’s three priority areas during its presidency are green, competitive and socially sustainable Nordic region. The Covid-19 pandemic effects the Finnish Presidency and has highlighted the need to develop the Nordic contingency planning for crises.
Two Councils of Ministers deal with economic affairs and employment
The Nordic cooperation matters involving the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment are considered at the Nordic Council of Ministers for Sustainable Growth (MR-VÆKST) and the Nordic Council of Ministers for Labour (MR-A). The latter Council also discusses matters falling under the mandate of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health. Nordic ministers and public officials meet regularly in inter-governmental, regional and bilateral events to discuss topical Nordic issues and implement common measures. In many sectors, cooperation is pursued even outside the inter-governmental sphere (e.g. Nordic Investment Bank) and in collaboration with the Baltic States and other countries.
Committees of Senior Officials, working under the Councils of Ministers, prepare matters for the ministers and are responsible for implementing and developing measures in their sectors. Specialised joint Nordic research institutes work under the Committees of Senior Officials and produce research for use in Nordic policymaking. The Nordic Institute for Advanced Training in Occupational Health is set up by the Council of Ministers for Labour and operates in Helsinki.
All the departments in the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment are active in the Nordic cooperation. The department for EU and international affairs is in charge of the general coordination of cooperation.
Riikka Aaltonen (Innovations and Enterprise Financing) riikka.aaltonen(at)gov.fi
Maria Kekki (Energy) maria.kekki(at)gov.fi
Hanna-Maria Urjankangas (Regions and Growth Services) hanna-maria.urjankangas(at)gov.fi
Pauliina Porkka (Employment and Well-Functioning Market) pauliina.porkka(at)gov.fi
Anna Bruun (Labour Migration and Intergration) anna.bruun(at)gov.fi
Tiina Heiskanen (EU and International affairs) tiina.heiskanen(at)gov.fi
Taru Löyttymäki (EU and International affairs) taru.loyttymaki(at)gov.fi