Helsinki region needs its own competitiveness pact

Greater Helsinki must be afforded the same opportunity to develop its strengths as the more rural regions in Finland, demands Sauli Hievanen, an industry policy specialist at the Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions (SAK).

“Finnish regional and competitiveness policy has always sworn by developing regional strengths. The Helsinki region, however, has not been allowed to do that,” he wrote in his blog on Tuesday  - writes helsinkitimes.fi.

He views that urban policy making has been neglected by the government of Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre). Sweden, he highlights, has invested ten times as much in supporting investments in its capital region than Finland. The word ‘urbanisation’ similarly does not appear once in the government programme, titled Finland, a land of solutions .

“In spite of its importance and future-shaping dimension, urban policy has not been on the agenda of the government of Sipilä. On the contrary, the government has been allowed to unabashedly strip cities of power until recently,” he slams.

Hievanen reminds that the success of the capital region is crucial also for the rest of Finland. He stresses that the next government must recognise the special significance of the region and take advantage of the positive effects of urbanisation on economic growth.

He draws attention to a study conducted by McKinsey, which indicates that the degree of urbanisation accounts for two-thirds of the disparities in gross domestic product growth in Europe and the United States.

“People primarily do not move to a particular country but rather to the most attractive cities. The importance of cities as producers and maintainers of competitiveness is greater than that of states. Metropolitan areas' significance as drivers of the global economy will increase particularly,” predicts Hievanen.

He also voices his support for demands that the next government agree on “a competitiveness pact” with the municipalities and higher education institutions in Greater Helsinki. The pact, he explains, would extend co-operation between the central administration and the metropolitan area to the domains of education, innovation and research.

The idea of the competitiveness pact was floated in an urban policy assessment published on Tuesday by MDI Public .The assessment was conducted on commission from SAK, Service Sector United (PAM), the Mortgage Society of Finland (Hypo), the Confederation of Finnish Construction Industries (RT), the Finnish Innovation Fund (Sitra), and the Building Information Group.

It found, for example, that Greater Helsinki is growing at a relatively modest rate in comparison to the capital regions elsewhere in the Nordics.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT

Photo: Vesa Moilanen – Lehtikuva

Source: Uusi Suomi

Read more news of Helsinki on our site.

helsinkitimes.fi
Helsinkiregion competitivenesspact
If you notice an error, highlight the text you want and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editor
2 views in january
I recommend
No recommendations yet

Comments

Post your comment to communicate and discuss this article.

Society
The coach of a sports club in Hyvinkää, southern Finland has been remanded into police custody on suspicion of sexual abuse of minors he was coaching, the Itä-Uusimaa police department said on Thursday. Officials said that they are investigating the case as suspected child abuse but did not disclose the ages of the alleged victims. The suspect in the case, a 50-year-old man, was remanded into custody on Wednesday. The suspected sexual abuse is believed to...
Society
Finns increasingly forego do-it-yourself construction of prefab elements in favour of completely completed homes. Turnkey homes (where homes are fully finished and owners can immediately occupy them) have become more popular than traditional house packages, says the Finnish Association for Manufacturers of Prefabricated Houses. “About 7,500 detached homes are built in Finland every year, and about 70 percent of them are prefabricated houses of some kind,”...
Society
THE FESTIVE ATMOSPHERE in the Helsinki neighbourhood of Arabianranta was visibly subdued on Tuesday, as residents mourned the death of a local child who is believed to have been murdered. While little information has been released to the public, it is known that the victim was murdered near their home on the night of Christmas Eve (December 24). The police apprehended a suspect at the scene of the crime, who has been confirmed as a 36-year old male. Whethe...
Society
One of Finland’s most famous seafaring vessels, the titanic icebreaker Otso, was deployed on its first mission of the winter season last night, keeping sea routes open for the 22nd year in a row. Late in the evening of Christmas Day, Otso, the crowning glory of Arctia Oy’s extensive fleet, departed from Helsinki’s Katajanokka Harbour, heading north to the Bay of Bothnia. The 7000-ton Polar icebreaker has been tasked with keeping waterways open between Oulu...
Society
Eight Finnish political parties have published their a statement on future climate policy goals in Finland. Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre) in November invited all nine parliamentary parties to join a task force established to find an agreement on new, more ambitious climate goals for Finland. The one-month project was led by Kimmo Tiilikainen (Centre), the Minister of the Environment, Energy and Housing. The Finns Party abandoned the task force last w...
Society
A 25-year-old man suspected of the sexual abuse of a girl under the age of 15 in Oulu, northwestern Finland, who was arrested in Germany last Tuesday is now reported to be at large. According to law enforcement officials in Oulu, the suspect was released by German police before he could be transferred to Finnish custody due to "a breakdown in communication between authorities". Oulu District Court ordered the suspect to be reprimanded into custody in absen...
Society
Finland’s high earners saw their real income grow more in 2017 than their peers in middle and low income groups, according to new data released by Statistics Finland on Tuesday. Incomes among the country’s highest income decile rose by 4.4 percent in 2017 compared to 2016, while the year-on-year increase was 1.3 percent for middle income earners. Incomes for the four lowest income deciles meanwhile grew by 1.2 percent over the one-year period. However amon...
Society
A man wanted in connection with a suspected arson attempt on a home in Helsinki’s Käpylä district was remanded into police custody on Sunday. The Helsinki district court has remanded a man suspected of attempted arson and attempted murder into police custody, ending a short-lived manhunt, police said on Sunday. The 25 year-old is suspected of using a Molotov cocktail to cause a fire at a flat in Käpylä, Helsinki last Monday. The apartment was completely de...
Society
Helsinki Central Library Oodi will opened its doors to the public on 5 December at 8am, a day before Finland’s 101st birthday. Designed by ALA Architects, this library of a new era is an ode to Finnish culture, equality and freedom of expression. Oodi offers everyone an open, public urban space at Kansalaistori Square, right opposite Parliament House. Central Library Oodi is an active and functional meeting point with 2.5 million expected annual visitors....