Yesterday, we looked at Jyrki Katainen's disparate ”six-pack” government taking shape in Finland after protracted negotiations.

Here are a few of the basic beliefs of the new government.

Nordic model

The government led by Jyrki Katainen promises to work for An Open, Fair and Bold Finland. Until now, the programme 'Avoin, oikeudenmukainen ja rohkea Suomi' has been published only in Finnish.

The programme proclaims that the Nordic model has proved to be the best societal model. It is based on a high employment rate, a competitive economy and equal access to services and care. It combines social cohesion and competitiveness.

In an almost utopian manner, the introduction is filled with work, progress, tolerance, caring and solidarity. Where one reader starts crying, another one might turn cynical.

Finding this modern day Leibniz – practically the EU founding values in Article 2 TEU - Voltaire would instantly have written his Candide.

On balance, however, I do not think that the underlying ideals stray that far from the real world truth, if we remember that there are always practical limits to what is achievable and that imperfect people put the policies into practice.

European Union

The introduction contains one specific paragraph about the European Union, which is called the most important international arena for Finland.

Finland aims for an EU which is a project for peace, growth, employment and social justice.

EU membership is in the interest of Finland, as is the development of the EU as a community, the programme underlines.

The government programme also defines participation in international decisions which affect Finns as (true) independence or sovereignty.


After the introductory credo, the EU is discussed in more detail later in the programme. In addition, because of the continuing interaction between national administrations and the EU institutions in more than thirty policy areas, most of the sections of the Finnish government programme have a European dimension.

Ralf Grahn

P.S. Is supranational economic governance enough for the European Union or the eurozone, if not based on EU-level democracy? The euroblogger Jon Worth wrote a thought-provoking post about the role of the European Parliament with regard to the ”six-pack” of legislative proposals.