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New expert group focuses on international success of businesses after COVID-19 crisis

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment 30.6.2020 16.15 | Published in English on 1.7.2020 at 15.38
Press release

An expert working group appointed by Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintilä will examine which measures would best support the growth of Finnish companies and their success in international competition during and after the COVID-19 crisis. The group will assess what kinds of changes would be required to legislation, knowledge and skills, public funding and cooperation structures, among other things.

The independent expert working group will be chaired by Pekka Ala-Pietilä, Chair of the Board of Directors of Huhtamäki Oyj. The term of the working group will run until the end of 2021.

“It is our intention not only to take a very close look at the crisis itself but also to explore beyond the acute measures and the coronavirus exit strategy. Finland's ability to ensure citizens' wellbeing will deteriorate if the coronavirus crisis keeps weakening the performance of the economy, potential output and employment for a longer time,” Minister of Economic Affairs Lintilä says.

Human capital at the centre of attention

The expert group will focus on internationalising companies and companies already operating on the international market. These often have different needs for support compared to companies operating on the domestic market. Particular attention will be paid to human capital, which refers to the knowledge and skills and the competence potential present in companies, for example.

“There is no single model that would be suitable for supporting all companies; instead, we must take into account the different needs and potential that companies have. Companies operating on the international market have special skills and competence potential that Finland needs to be able to get back on track in its pursuit for sustainable growth,” Minister of Economic Affairs Lintilä says.

The expert group will prepare a strategy and an action plan to:

  1. safeguard the existing knowledge and skills by supporting companies in maintaining their human and other capital,
  2. support the development of knowledge and skills and thus create conditions for new business activities,
  3. secure future wellbeing through economic growth and competitive business and industry.

The expert group will continue the work of the earlier working group chaired by Vesa Vihriälä, Professor of Practice, Economics. The working group proposed that a new expert group be appointed to consider how to ensure the maintenance of valuable human and organisational capital throughout the current crisis. Organisational capital refers to so-called tacit knowledge and established customer relationships, among other things.

High-level economic expertise in the expert group

In addition to the chairperson Pekka Ala-Pietilä, the members of the expert group are:

  • Elina Björklund, Chief Executive Officer, Reima Oy
  • Martti Hetemäki, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance
  • Janne Larma, Chief Executive Officer, EQ
  • Ilona Lundström, Director General, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment
  • Inka Mero, Partner, Voima Ventures
  • Jan Sasse, Chief Executive Officer, Finnish Industry Investment Ltd
  • Vesa Vihriälä, Professor of Practice, Economics, University of Helsinki

Inquiries:

Jenny Hasu, Special Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 40 65 83510
Sampsa Nissinen, Senior Ministerial Adviser, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +258 295 047 189

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