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Ministerial Committee on EU Affairs prepares for Prague meetings

Government Communications Department
Publication date 5.10.2022 11.01 | Published in English on 5.10.2022 at 13.43
Press release
Finnish flag and EU flag side by side

In its meeting on Wednesday 5 October, the Ministerial Committee on European Union Affairs outlined Finland’s positions for the inaugural meeting of the European Political Community on Thursday 6 October and the informal meeting of the European Council on Friday 7 October, both of which will take place in Prague.

Finland considers the first meeting of the European Political Community important, as it will promote close cooperation between the EU and its European partners. This will help to strengthen the EU’s external role and promote its values and interests, both in neighbouring areas and at the global level. In addition to the heads of state or government of the EU Member States, leaders from 17 non-EU countries have been invited to the meeting.

In Finland’s view, it is important to ensure that the European Political Community produces concrete added value. Cooperation must take into account the EU’s relations with each country and make full use of the existing EU instruments, such as enlargement policy. In addition to the opening and closing sessions, the programme will include thematic roundtable discussions in small groups. The topics of the discussions will be security and stability, the economy, energy and climate. In Finland’s view, it is important to use the meeting as an opportunity to strengthen unity with regard to measures against Russia and support for Ukraine. 

At the informal meeting of the European Council, the heads of state or government will discuss Ukraine, the energy situation and economic issues. Finland strongly supports Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity. Finland considers it important that the EU continue its strong, effective and united response to Russia’s military attacks in Ukraine. The EU must continue to consistently ramp up sanctions against Russia as its aggression continues. At the same time, the EU must continue and increase its strong political, economic, military and humanitarian support to Ukraine.

In Finland’s view, it is important to address the problems with the functioning of the energy market quickly at the EU level. Finland is open to different options for reducing the energy prices and mitigating uncertainty and risks in the market. Finland stresses the importance of measures that will quickly influence the price and availability of energy. Finland welcomes the idea of a price cap for natural gas. However, it is important to carefully assess the impacts of the Commission’s proposed price cap on the availability of and demand for gas. In Finland’s view, it is important to ensure that crisis mitigation measures do not create uncertainty about the implementation of clean energy investments and the functioning of the energy market, and to make sure there are sufficient incentives for investments in emission-free energy. The Commission should immediately review the rules for the derivatives markets.

Finland also considers it important to discuss the economic situation, which is currently fraught with a great deal of uncertainty.

Inquiries: Jari Luoto, Director General, EU Affairs Department, tel. +358 50 468 5949, Saara Pokki, Special Adviser (EU Affairs), tel. +358 50 478 6363 and Anne Sjöholm, Head of Communications for EU Affairs, tel. +358 40 537 0733, Prime Minister’s Office