Finnish Parliament Approves EU’s Recovery Fund
Parliament approved the EU’s resources decision by a vote of 134-57.
On Tuesday, Finland approved the European Union’s €750 billion recovery fund, a spending package to fight the downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
Finland has estimated to receive €3.2 million from the recovery fund and is estimated to pay a total of €6.6 million between 2021–2058.
The subject was debated in Parliament for several days and finally, it approved the EU’s resources decision by a vote of 134-57 (abstentions 2, absent 6). Those who were absent included one member of the Centre Party, one from the SDP and four from the Left Alliance. From the opposition, ten representatives voted no and two abstained from the vote.
To be adopted, the proposal required at least two-thirds of the votes cast in the plenary session.
The Finance Committee report included eight proposed resolutions which Parliament also approved in its vote:
- Parliament requires that the recovery instrument be considered an exceptional and one-off solution, that the arrangement does not serve as a precedent and that Finland will not accept a repetition of or the arrangement becoming permanent.
- Parliament demands that Finland promote the introduction of the common European debt settlement mechanism and the rules it would require, as well as compliance with the no-bailout clause of the treaty. Finland requires each Member State to be responsible for its own debts so that the risk premium determined in the credit market maintains fiscal discipline and risk reduction.
- Parliament requires that Finland does not commit itself to measures that will shape the European Union in the direction of an asymmetric transfer union. Finland requires arrangements in which the responsibility and power for taking and managing debt are in the same hands and are not separated causing a moral hazard and increasing the risk of over-indebtedness. Finland does not accept arrangements that weaken Member States’ incentives to rehabilitate their public finances and increase risks to financial and macroeconomic stability in Europe.
- Parliament requires that when considering the Member States’ national recovery plans, Finland adhere to conditionality and fiscal consolidation for all Member States, does not approve the allocation of funds without credible structural reforms to rehabilitate public finances and requires that the payment of funds be conditional on the rule of law.
- Parliament requires that the funds received by the Sustainable Growth Programme for Finland be concentrated effectively for purposes that support both recovery and long-term growth, especially in research and development and raising the level of expertise.
- Parliament requires that Finland adhere to its established tax policy positions and does not accept supranational taxes that are harmful to Finland.
- Parliament requires that the development of the EU’s own resources system does not lead to an increase in Finland’s overall tax rate.
- Parliament requires that Finland influence the direction of EU economic policy by building effective cooperation with those Member States that share the goals set by Parliament for EU economic policy.
After the first vote, on approval of the own resources decision, Parliament also voted on eight draft resolutions which were proposed in the Finns Party’s dissension to the Finance Committee report.
These votes were between the Finance Committee report and the Finns Party’s draft resolutions and decided by a simple majority. Parliament rejected the Finns Party’s proposals.
Parliament has finished its handling of the matter.