Antti Rinne, the chairperson of the Social Democrats, spoke to reporters in the House of the Estates in Helsinki on Sunday, 19 May 2019. (Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva)

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THE LEADERS of the five Finnish parties involved in the coalition formation negotiations are close to finding an agreement on the economic framework for the next government programme, tells Antti Rinne of the Social Democratic Party.

“We made progress on economic issues. The economic framework is largely done,” he said to reporters after sitting down with the four other chairpersons on Sunday.

“We’ve had good co-operation throughout the process. There are difficult issues and we’ll have to find answers to them. We still have a couple of issues to go through,” he said, adding that the issues include taxation and measures to promote employment growth.

“We’ll still have to work on these issues, but the framework for the work is now clear,” he reiterated.

Rinne revealed that the economic framework will be published no later than once the government programme has been finalised. The objective, he added, remains to finalise the programme on Friday.

“We’ll continue in the same fashion as we did this week. It seems to me that this is moving forward nicely, just as was planned,” he said.

Juha Sipilä, the chairperson of the Centre Party, on Friday expressed his frustration with the lack of progress made in the coalition formation negotiations, but declined to comment further on the negotiations on Sunday.

Pekka Haavisto, the chairperson of the Green League, said his party reviewed the financial framework on Sunday. “The key issues will definitely be the major infrastructure investments that are important for combating climate change, such as fast-speed rail connections,” he said. “I’m sure that everyone realises that now that we’ve looked at the big picture and compiled the big list, we can’t implement everything immediately.”

Anna-Maja Henriksson, the chairperson of the Swedish People’s Party, said the party is not willing to budge on its demands for responsible economic policy making.

“Our idea of responsible economic policy making is effectively making sure the economy is in good condition after this electoral term and making sure the employment rate rises to 75 per cent,” she stated.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: Uusi Suomi