Finland

The main challenge in implementing the 2030 Agenda in Finland will be integrating the principles and targets of sustainable development into all of the country’s domestic policies, including those policies related to developing countries. At the outset, it is especially important to pay attention to choosing suitable indicators and monitoring and following up on them. Coherence will not be possible without concrete targets and indicators by which to measure them. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) can be achieved only in co-operation with all stakeholders including civil society, the private sector, scientific institutions and the media. Implementation of the 2030 Agenda is also broadly supported by Finnish civil society, which is currently in the process of building a systematic internal co-operation structure to create new kinds of partnerships in line with the universal spirit of the SDGs.

The Finnish government wants to be an accountable member of the international community, but its political will to be so does not always transpire. Finland has not, for example, been able to reach the 0.7 % target for its development funding.

The Finnish government wants to be an accountable member of the international community, but its political will to be so does not always transpire. Finland has not, for example, been able to reach the 0.7 % target for its development funding. On the other hand Finland's current Development Policy Programme is positively founded on a rights-based approach. The challenge for Finnish civil society is to compel the government to improve its international performance.
Anabela Lemos.
(Photo: Atte Keinänen/Kepa.)

"Land grabs" in the Global South have caused much debate and concern during the last couple of years, especially since the global food price crisis of 2008. Kepa, a platform for Finnish NGOs interested in development issues and focal point of Social Watch in that European country, held a discussion on the issue this month. Tuomo Alhojärvi wrote a report on the debate for Kepa’s website.

Family ties are strong in rural
Kenya. (Photo: Barry Lewis
Corbis/Helsingin Sanomat)

Finland has certain problems: many people numb themselves with antidepressant drugs and alcohol, people bully and harass each other at work, a young man will fire into a crowd of people, a father kills his family. Finnish people should learn something from developing countries, wrote Johana Pohjola in an article published by Helsingin Sanomat daily newspaper.

The country needs to recognize that there are no easy and sustainable technological fixes. Reducing energy consumption and the ecological footprint can be started by passing a climate act for cutting emissions annually by 5%. It is time to redefine the sustainable development agenda beyond narrowly interpreted State and business interests. The sustainability agenda can be used by social movements to pressure governments and companies successfully. It is time for an open discussion on the fundamental issues of well-being, equality and development, including forsaking the unending quest for material growth.

Source: Helsingin Sanomat

Concerns about climate change and about the future of the planet were given the most weight by the readers of Helsingin Sanomat (HS), a Finnish newspaper, when they voted on what they considered to be the most unethical product in the world.

Although the shift in priorities of its Development Policy Program has been positive in some respects, Finland's focus on social development and social rights has diminished. There are insufficient mechanisms in place to ensure that gender equality, the rights of women and vulnerable groups, and combating HIV/AIDS are tackled. In order for development policies and cooperation to be truly sustainable, the country should increase its aid in both absolute and percentage terms. Beyond official development assistance (ODA), innovative financing mechanisms – including financial transaction taxes – should also be introduced.
Syndicate content