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“We are Europe” tour of Finnish ministers begins

Government Communications Department
Publication date 16.9.2021 11.59 | Published in English on 17.9.2021 at 11.46
Press release 522/2021

Minister for European Affairs Tytti Tuppurainen opened the first in a series of EU discussion events in Helsinki on Thursday 16 September. This autumn and winter, Finnish ministers will tour the country to discuss the future of Europe with Finnish people. The ministers’ “We are Europe” tour is part of the Conference on the Future of Europe.

The tour started in Helsinki’s Narinkkatori, where Minister for European Affairs Tytti Tuppurainen listened to Finns’ ideas and hopes for the future of Europe. In the discussions, Finns raised issues related to employment, equality and climate change, for example.

“Right now, it is important that we hear what the Finnish people have to say about the European policy and the future. The coronavirus crisis has shown how important it is we work together in Europe and strengthen our common crisis resilience. At the same time, all of us have undoubtedly noticed things where Europe must improve. For example, we must strengthen our common value base and safeguard the rule of law on this continent too. In that way, Europe can continue to play an important role in world politics,” said Tuppurainen.

The programme also included a panel discussion on the Conference on the Future of Europe, which was attended by Tuppurainen, Member of European Parliament Sirpa Pietikäinen and Member of Parliament Eveliina Heinäluoma. Maria Kokkonen, Acting Head of Representation of the European Commission in Finland, also provided comments on the topic. 

The discussion was organised by the Prime Minister’s Office, the European Commission’s and Parliament’s offices in Finland, the Foreign Ministry’s Europe Information and the European Movement in Finland. The discussion will be available at Livekatsomo and as a Facebook event later. 

“The Conference on the Future of Europe is a joint effort by the EU institutions to stimulate a comprehensive public debate on the future of Europe. Because this work is common, it is natural to cooperate with the parties committed to the conference in Finland. Our shared mission is to bring the voice and ideas of Finnish people to the European meeting rooms,” Tuppurainen said.

More than half of the Finnish ministers will participate in the “We are Europe” tour. A number of discussion events will be organised in different parts of Finland. The northernmost event will be held in Utsjoki, which will make it the northernmost place for any event on the Conference on the Future of Europe. 

The dates and venues of the ministers’ tour were announced in connection with the opening on the tour’s event website and at the online forum of the Conference on the Future of Europe. The events will also be announced in advance in the ministries’ press releases and newspaper advertisements and on their social media channels. After each event, members of the public can go to the digital platform to read about the challenges and opportunities that emerged in the discussion. The Finnish ministers will take these comments to the EU-level plenary sessions of the Conference.  

The website of Europe Information includes an open survey addressed to citizens on the issues that should be raised in the discussions with the Finnish ministers. The survey is available until the end of September. 

You can also share your thoughts and ideas at the online forum of the Conference on the Future. The online forum seeks citizens’ views on values, climate change, the economy, health and education, and other themes. A common EU-level hashtag #TheFutureIsYours can be used on social media.

Inquiries: Topi Juga, Specialist, EU Affairs, tel. +358 295 160 459 and Anne Sjöholm, Head of Communications for EU and International Affairs, tel. +358 40 537 0733, Prime Minister’s Office

Tytti Tuppurainen
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