Sampo Terho (BR), the Minister for European Affairs, Culture and Sports, has accused the government of high-handedly changing its position on the re-distribution of the United Kingdom’s seats in the European Parliament.
“I understand and am very keenly aware that the prime minister leads Finland’s EU policy. But he doesn’t dictate Finland’s EU policy,” Terho stated to Uusi Suomi on Friday.
“These views are formed collectively and they must be respected as long as they remain unchanged.”
The Ministerial Committee on European Union Affairs on Friday announced, in what can be interpreted as a reversal of its position on the issue, that it supports a compromise proposal that would re-distribute 27 of the UK’s 73 seats in the European Parliament evenly among the remaining 27 member states after Brexit.
The Blue Reform stated in its dissenting opinion that the government should have complied with what had been previously agreed on especially because it could have yet convinced other member states to oppose the seat re-distribution.
“Great Britain’s exit mustn’t lead to higher costs, but we have to create savings,” Terho said, arguing that in order to maintain the current cost level the withdrawal of one member state should be reflected in full in the distribution of seats in the European Parliament.
Petteri Orpo (NCP), the Minister of Finance, has voiced his disappointment at the way in which the disagreement was made public by the Blue Reform.
“I think they’ve put together quite an absurd mess,” he said. “Today’s operation was carried out rather distastefully. I’m certain it won’t do good for the [relations between the three ruling parties].”
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Roni Rekomaa – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi