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European Council to discuss international tensions at Brussels meeting

Prime Minister's Office
Publication date 16.4.2024 17.44
Press release
Prime Minister Petteri Orpo walking, behind there is the European Council logo.
Kuva: EU:n neuvosto

Prime Minister Petteri Orpo will represent Finland at the extraordinary European Council on 17–18 April in Brussels, where discussions will focus on the tense situation in the international arena. Items on the EU leaders’ agenda include the ongoing events in the Middle East and Ukraine, relations with Türkiye and Europe’s long-term competitiveness.

According to Prime Minister Orpo, recent developments in the Middle East have further exacerbated international tensions. Orpo stressed that the EU and the rest of the international community must do everything they can to prevent the conflict between Iran and Israel from escalating further.

“However, we must not forget that Ukraine needs our continued support. At the same time, the war is ongoing in Gaza, where the humanitarian situation remains dire,” Prime Minister Orpo said.

The EU leaders will also discuss Europe’s competitiveness in light of an independent report presented by former Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta.

Ahead of the meeting, Prime Minister Orpo highlighted the importance of a well-functioning single market for the entire EU. The Union must prevent distortions in competition. “Further developing the single market plays a key role when it comes to competitiveness. A well-functioning single market based on free movement and effective policies on state aid and competition ensure predictability and promote a favourable investment environment,” says Prime Minister Orpo.

While in Brussels, Prime Minister Orpo will also attend a reception organised by the King Philippe of Belgium. In addition, Finland will host a meeting of the Prime Ministers of Denmark, Estonia, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Sweden (NBIP8) before the start of the European Council.

Inquiries: Jori Arvonen, State Under-Secretary for EU Affairs, tel. +358 295 16001, Tuomas Tikkanen, Special Adviser (EU Affairs), tel. +358 40 523 5768 and Marko Ruonala, Project Manager (Communications), tel. +358 50 522 8233, Prime Minister’s Office.

More information about the meeting
•    European Council 17–18 April 2024 |
•    Meeting documents approved by the Ministerial Committee on EU Affairs are published in the online service of the Prime Minister’s Office (in Finnish)
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