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Eero Heinäluoma (SDP) on Tuesday voiced his puzzlement with the absence of key cabinet members during a parliamentary debate on a government statement on the employment policy line in Finland. (Credit: Martti Kainulainen – Lehtikuva)
Eero Heinäluoma (SDP) on Tuesday voiced his puzzlement with the absence of key cabinet members during a parliamentary debate on a government statement on the employment policy line in Finland. (Credit: Martti Kainulainen – Lehtikuva)

 

Members of the Finnish Parliament on Tuesday debated at length a government statement on its employment policy approach, but failed to make any progress in bridging the gulf between the ruling and opposition parties.

Some representatives, in fact, viewed that the government’s inability to justify its position only exacerbated the confusion surrounding its proposal to ease laying off for small businesses.

The Finnish government was also accused of a lack of commitment to the debate: it launched the employment policy debate with much fanfare – by resorting to as unconventional a method as the government statement – but all of its members had vacated their seats in the session hall by 6.50pm on Tuesday.

Eero Heinäluoma (SDP) expressed his puzzlement with the actions of cabinet members earlier, following the departure of Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre).

“A moment ago this was billed as a super-important question that’s critical for the government’s policy approach. Then the prime minister walks away, in the middle of the debate. I’m a big fan of television myself, but I do think you should continue a parliamentary debate also after the TV cameras have been turned off,” he said.

Heinäluoma added that although the debate had at that point dragged on for three hours, a number of questions remained entirely unaddressed.

“My understanding of what the government is doing is even poorer than what it was [before the debate],” he said. “If I was a business owner, I wouldn’t know if I dare to lay off anyone, or hire anyone.”

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: Uusi Suomi

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