Foreign Ministry's press releases
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and the University of Helsinki announce a new initiative to support the strengthening of the rule of law in developing countries
Finland is strengthening its activities to support the rule of law activities in developing countries. Supporting democracy and the rule of law is a key goal of the Government programme and of the development policy of Finland. In recent years the rule of law has considerably weakened in different parts the world. The rule of law is subjected to increasing challenges that are exacerbated further by the COVID-19 pandemic. Work to promote and strengthen the rule of law is increasingly important.
Recommendations to Finland on the implementation of economic, social and cultural rights
Today, on 8 March 2021, the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) issued its recommendations on Finland’s seventh periodic report concerning the implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
Development Policy Committee: A triple nexus approach is needed for development cooperation, humanitarian assistance and peace actions
Development cooperation, humanitarian assistance and peace actions should provide a more efficient joint response to the needs of people affected by crises. Closer collaboration between the various actors is therefore vital. This is the key conclusion of the analysis published by the Development Policy Committee (DPC), in which an expert group consisting of representatives of DPC members analyses the current situation and provides recommendations for the next steps to be taken for further improvements.
Major drop in Schengen visa applications submitted at Finnish missions because of entry restrictions and health security measures due to COVID-19 pandemic
In 2020, Finland processed a total of 152,543 applications for a Schengen visa. The decrease in the visa applications received was 83% as compared to the number of visas processed in 2019 (895,781).
The exceptional circumstances of 2020 showed in consular assistance
In 2020, the Unit for Consular Assistance provided nearly twice as much guidance compared to the previous year. In the spring, during the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic, personal guidance and advice were given to tens of thousands of travellers stranded abroad. Thousands of travellers were assisted in returning to Finland after air traffic ground to a sudden halt.
Discretionary government grants to civil society organisations operating in the field of foreign and security policy, awarded for 2021
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs has granted EUR 1 026 000 in discretionary government grants to 14 civil society organisations (CSOs) operating in the field of foreign and security policy.
EU foreign ministers to discuss Russia and meet US foreign minister
The EU foreign ministers will convene in Brussels on Monday 22 February. Finland’s representative at the meeting will be Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto. The ministers will exchange views on Russia, the Strategic Compass for EU security and defence policy, and Hong Kong. Foreign Minister Haavisto will give a report on his visit to Ethiopia and Sudan as Special Envoy of the European Union. The United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken is expected to join the meeting by video conference. On 24 February, Foreign Minister Haavisto will attend a meeting of the North Atlantic Council.
Funding granted for civil society organisations’ development communication and global education projects to promote awareness of and engagement in sustainable development
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs (MFA) has granted EUR 2.17 million to Finnish civil society organisations’ (CSOs) development communication and global education projects in Finland in 2021–2022. In this application round, project support was granted to 19 CSOs.
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