Finnish entry to the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 Käärijä performing during a free concert at the Eurovision Village in Liverpool, Great Britain on May 10, 2023. LEHTIKUVA

Finland in the world press

The divorce of Finland’s outgoing Prime Minister, Sanna Marin was widely covered by international media this week. Sanna Marin and her husband Markus Raikkonen, who got married in 2020, have decided to end their marriage and filed for divorce.

Marin announced the news on her Instagram account, expressing gratitude for the 19 years they spent together and their shared love for their five-year-old daughter.

Some international media like BBCCNN and The Guardian, among others, covered the story with neutral headlines and the articles gave details of the tenure of the prime minister.

Media outlets such as the New York PostDaily Mail and Fox News have prominently featured the controversy surrounding Sanna Marin’s partying with friends and celebrities in August 2022 in their headlines. As of now, Marin is leading a caretaker government, but she will be stepping down from office once a new government is formed.

Eurovision hopeful wants to prove Finnish music can achieve global success

Finland’s Käärijä entering the finals of Eurovision 2023 was covered in an article published in Evening Standard on May 11. The article highlights how Käärijä is determined to secure victory in order to showcase the potential of songs performed in the Finnish language to achieve global success.

The 29-year-old singer has garnered attention from the voting public with his eye-catching luminous green bolero-style jacket and energetic song titled “Cha Cha Cha,” which transitions from metal to hyperpop in the three-minute song. The article also mentions Käärijä’s stiff competition during Saturday’s grand final from other Nordic countries, including Loreen from Sweden, Alessandra from Norway and Reiley from Denmark.

“In Finland, many people are thinking that if you go to Eurovision with a Finnish song that song can’t win. I want to do that and say to Finnish people that yes, it is possible to do that thing. And, of course, I want to do something new. I want to be the first artist who does that,” Käräijä told the PA news agency.

The article also states that while Käärijä refrained from providing specific odds on his chances of winning, he acknowledged that it would be a close competition with Loreen representing Sweden.

Original story was published by Evening Standard on 11.05.2023 and can be found here.

Finland participates in NATO drills for the first time as Alliance’s member

Finland participating in North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s (NATO) drill for the first time as its member was covered in an article by TVP World on May 10. The article discusses the Arrow 23 maneuvers that involve approximately 3,000 soldiers and nearly 400 armored vehicles, including Leopard and Abrams tanks. Alongside Finnish troops, forces from the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Baltic states are also participating.

“The attitude has changed. We are in NATO. We have an obligation to defend each other and act together. Until now, we have participated in NATO exercises over the years as a partner country, but we are no longer a partner, but a member of the Alliance. This affects the nature of maneuvers both in Finland and abroad,” General Timo Kivinen, commander of the Finnish Armed Forces said.

The Arrow 23 maneuvers, taking place at training grounds in southwestern Finland, began on May 1 and will continue until May 14 with an objective to enhance the operational capabilities of mechanized units in challenging combat scenarios.

The maneuvers involve a range of armored vehicles, including Warrior infantry fighting vehicles from the United Kingdom, Pasi armored personnel carriers from Latvia, M113 armored personnel carriers from Lithuania, CV90 infantry fighting vehicles from Estonia, Bradley infantry fighting vehicles and Abrams tanks from the United States and Leopard 2 tanks from Finland..

Original story was published by TVP World on 10.05.2023 and can be found here.

New government must strengthen Finland’s global responsibility and impact, says Development Policy Committee

This article on the Development Policy Committee’s (DPC) significant message to Finland’s government-formation negotiators, emphasizing the importance of promoting global sustainable development, was published in European Interest on May 3. The article provides an analysis of the upcoming government’s role in leveraging the country’s global presence and security. The DPC underlines the significance of core values such as democracy, the rule of law, gender equality and non-discrimination in these endeavors.

The committee’s message to government-formation negotiators in 2023 highlights the key elements of Finland’s global responsibility and impact, including development cooperation, humanitarian assistance, development policy, responsible business, and investments. The DPC believes that by prioritizing these goals, Finland can ensure its long-term security.

The article highlights that as the sole entity responsible for comprehensive monitoring and analysis of Finnish development cooperation and development policy, the DPC plays a crucial role in shaping Finland’s approach in these areas.

“Our approach is to maintain and improve existing practices and policies that enjoy wide support in Parliament and in society. We hope that Finland’s next Government will be building a bridge across government terms that enables Finland to reach these objectives,” Inka Hopsu, Chair of the Development Policy Committee said.

Original story was published by European Interest on 03.05.2023 and can be found here.

Rio Tinto to co-fund Finnish solution to recover critical minerals, metals from mine wastewater

The Anglo-australian mining giant Rio Tinto’s plan to co-fund a water treatment solution by Weeefiner and Sensmet to recover critical minerals and rare earth metals from mine wastewater was covered in an article published by on May 10. The article explores details of the joint project by Finnish companies, known as the Intelligent Recovery Unit (IRU) which has received funding from Rio Tinto Group’s sustainable water treatment challenge program.

Over a span of three years, the project could receive up to $2 million in co-funding. The article mentions that while Weeefiner will oversee the metal recovery and water treatment aspect,  Sensmet will focus on developing online measurement technology to enable continuous process control.

To date, water treatment methods at mining sites have focused on decontamination by precipitation, which requires large amounts of chemicals such as lime, and represents a heavy carbon footprint,” Mikko Hänninen, Weeefiner CEO, said in a media statement.

Initially, the companies will treat synthetic water in Finnish research facilities to demonstrate effective monitoring and removal of metals like copper, cobalt, and nickel. Once successful, Rio Tinto will provide samples from closed mining sites for a similar assessment.

Original story was published by on 10.05.2023 and can be found here.

Growing interest in Finnish language as part of school curricula

This article about an increasing number of schools in Estonia planning to add Finnish language lessons to their curricula was published in ERR news on May 6. The article elaborates on the demand for Finnish language education amid an initial shortage of teachers due to the sheer numbers of Finnish speakers in Estonia who do not yet teach the language.

The article also points out that with over 7,000 Finnish nationals living in Estonia and over 50,000 Estonians residing across the Gulf of Finland, the cultural, historical, linguistic, and business ties between the two countries are strong.

The Estonia’ Ministry of Education is supportive of expanding Finnish language education in Estonian schools, and there is even a suggestion from President Alar Karis that it could become mandatory. The recognition of the importance of Finnish language education reflects the close relationship between Estonia and Finland and the desire to strengthen linguistic ties and cultural exchange.

“40 schools in Estonia already provide the opportunity to learn Finnish. However, there are actually schools all over Estonia, where people want to start and where they could indeed do so,” Ilona Säälik, board member at the Finnish language teachers’ association (Soome keele õpetajate selts) said in ETV news show Aktuaalne kaamera.

Original story was published by ERR news on 06.05.2023 and can be found here.

Finnish Scientists Develop a Method for Corporations to Assess Their Biodiversity Footprint—an Internationally Groundbreaking Pilot Project Assessed S Group’s Impact on Nature

This article about researchers at the University of Jyväskylä developing a method for corporations to assess their biodiversity footprint was published in Business Wire on May 9. The article provides details of the pilot project focused on S Group’s biodiversity footprint. The results of this study will be made publicly available as a freely accessible method for all companies and organizations to evaluate their impact on nature.

The interim report of the project highlights that the majority of S Group’s biodiversity footprint is attributed to food and fuels, with a significant portion of the impact occurring beyond Finland’s borders. Utility goods, on the other hand, account for a much smaller portion of the biodiversity footprint, amounting to a few percent.

“Companies already routinely calculate their carbon footprints. This project demonstrates that they can also calculate their biodiversity footprint. A company like S Group, with operations in several different sectors, played a key role in the method’s development,” Janne Kotiaho, Professor of Ecology at the University of Jyväskylä said.

Elaborating on how S Group’s biodiversity footprint was assessed, the article states that the method utilizes an indicator called the Potentially Disappeared Fraction (PDF) of species, which measures the proportion of species at risk of extinction. This indicator allows for the quantification of biodiversity impacts in a manner similar to carbon footprint assessments, facilitating international comparisons of corporations’ biodiversity footprints.

Original story was published by Business Wire on 09.05.2023 and can be found here.