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Prime Ministers of Finland and Estonia discussed EU multiannual financial framework

Government Communications Department
Publication date 7.5.2018 12.15 | Published in English on 7.5.2018 at 13.26
Press release 235/2018

Prime Minister Juha Sipilä of Finland and Prime Minister Jüri Ratas of Estonia held bilateral discussions on topical EU affairs on Monday 7 May in Tallinn in conjunction with the first-ever jubilee meeting organised together by the Government of Finland and the Government of Estonia. The main topic of discussion was the European Commission’s proposal for the EU’s next multiannual financial framework for the 2021-2027 period.

‘The Commission’s proposal takes account of key priorities for Finland and forms a realistic foundation for negotiations. But there is room for improvement. For example, the overall budget level is relatively high compared to what we had outlined. A good balance between our contributions and receipts needs to be reached during the negotiations,’ said Prime Minister Sipilä.

In the Commission’s proposal, both Finland and Estonia consider the proposed increased input into research and development and into boosting economic growth in the EU as well as improvements in migration, border security and defence cooperation to be good. Both countries express concern about the pressure to cut financial support for agriculture and cohesion. Both Finland and Estonia stressed the importance and relevance of these traditional policy areas.

The prime ministers also discussed the European Commission’s newly published digital proposals, such as the European artificial intelligence proposal and the proposal to construct a unified European data area. These are areas where both Finland and Estonia are highly advanced. Both countries aim to support economic growth in Europe by means of digitalisation. 

‘The Commission’s artificial intelligence proposal forms a good foundation. I see a lot of potential in it for cooperation between Finland and Estonia,’ observed Sipilä.

The Prime Ministers will also talk later today about the EU-Western Balkans Summit, about ways to develop EMU and about Brexit.

Inquiries: Kare Halonen, State Secretary for EU Affairs, tel. +358 295 160 319, Riikka Pakarinen, Special Adviser (EU Affairs), tel. +358 40 580 0833 and Anne Sjöholm, Head of Communications for EU and International Affairs, tel. +358 40 537 0733, Prime Minister’s Office

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Government communications:

Webcast of the Prime Minister’s conference at 17 pm: