Backgrounder: New faces in upcoming Finnish gov't

English.news.cn   2015-05-29 06:37:13

HELSINKI, May 28 (Xinhua) -- The Finnish three-party government, which will start operation this week, features many newcomers to power, including would-be Prime Minister Juha Sipila.

Local observers believe the hallmarks of the initial era will be the strong leadership by Sipila, and the populist Finns Party ministers will have to adapt themselves to the new roles.

-- Prime Minister: Juhani Sipila, 54, Center Party.

His experience is rare in Finland as he left a functioning enterprise and opted for politics. He became a multi-millionaire through the sale of his company Solitra to U.S. buyers in the 1990s. He was later the CEO of Eletrobit, but gave up his holdings in the company and became the chairman of the Centre Party.

With his graduate engineer degree background, Sipila was pictured as steering the government talks through tough management and publicity control. Local media reported that in the selection of centrist cabinet ministers he used his prerogative in a determined manner that caused uneasiness within the party.

-- Minister of Foreign Affairs: Timo Soini, 52, Finns Party.

Commentators have noted that interest paid by outsiders to the new Finnish government is largely concentrated on the role of the populist Finns Party due to its hard line on immigration and criticism of the European Union. Timo Soini has been a member of parliament since 2003 and has led the party for 20 years.

-- Minister of Finance: Alexander Stubb, 47, National Coalition Party.

Stubb will resign as the current prime minister and switch to the position as the minister for finance. As the conservatives receded from the leading position and became the third largest party in parliament, the possibility of ending up in opposition had loomed large. Stubb then emerged successfully from the government formation talks.

-- Minister of Economic Affairs: Olli Regn, 53, Center Party.

While centrist leader Sipila has not much political experience in the European affairs, Rehn has a 10-year record as Commissioner for Enlargement of the Union and has ministerial experience in handling the economic and monetary affairs in Finland.

-- Minister of Transport and Communications: Anne Berner, 51, Center Party.

Berner is a first term MP. She used to be a business person and an influential lobbyist for family owned larger enterprises. Berner got into national focus in 2013 and 2014 when she organized a campaign to finance a children's hospital with private money. As hospitals are publically financed in Finland, the campaign has been controversial.

-- Minister for Municipal Affairs and Development: Anu Vehvilainen, 51, Center Party.

She has been an MP since 1995 and has governmental experience.

-- Minister of Agriculture and Environment: Kimmo Tiilikainen, 48, Center Party.

-- Minister for Social Services and Family Affairs: Juha Rehula, 51, Center Party.

Rehula will take the position for next two years, and will then be succeeded by the Centre Party vice chairman Annika Saarikko, 31.

-- Denfence Minister: Jussi Niinisto, 44, Finns Party.

Niinisto is widely known as an expert in Finnish defence. Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat noted, however, that not everyone likes him as he is perhaps too enthusiastic about traditional national defence instead of contemporary crisis management.

-- Minister for Justice and Labor: Jari Lindstrom, 49, Finns Party.

Lindstrom is a former paper industry union activist. He is the second Finnish minister of justice without a law degree since 1918. Lindstrom made headlines instantly on Thursday as media dug up a 2011 statement by Lindstrom endorsing the death penalty. EU bans death penalties and Finland last executed civilian criminals in the 19th century.

-- Minister for Social Affairs and Health: Hanna Mantyla, 40, Finns Party.

Mantyla is known as a supporter for public health services.

-- Minister of Education and Culture: Sanni Grahn-Laasonen, 32, National Coalition Party.

She is a second term MP, and will have to bear the crunch of public criticism against the cutbacks in education budget.

-- Minister of Interior: Petteri Orpo, 45, National Coalition Party.

He is a third tenure MP.

-- Minister for Foreign Trade and Development: Lenita Toivakka, 52, National Coalition Party.

Toivakka has been the minister for European affairs and foreign trade in Stubb's government, and will retain much of her portfolio.

Editor: xuxin
Related News
Xinhuanet

Backgrounder: New faces in upcoming Finnish gov't

English.news.cn 2015-05-29 06:37:13

HELSINKI, May 28 (Xinhua) -- The Finnish three-party government, which will start operation this week, features many newcomers to power, including would-be Prime Minister Juha Sipila.

Local observers believe the hallmarks of the initial era will be the strong leadership by Sipila, and the populist Finns Party ministers will have to adapt themselves to the new roles.

-- Prime Minister: Juhani Sipila, 54, Center Party.

His experience is rare in Finland as he left a functioning enterprise and opted for politics. He became a multi-millionaire through the sale of his company Solitra to U.S. buyers in the 1990s. He was later the CEO of Eletrobit, but gave up his holdings in the company and became the chairman of the Centre Party.

With his graduate engineer degree background, Sipila was pictured as steering the government talks through tough management and publicity control. Local media reported that in the selection of centrist cabinet ministers he used his prerogative in a determined manner that caused uneasiness within the party.

-- Minister of Foreign Affairs: Timo Soini, 52, Finns Party.

Commentators have noted that interest paid by outsiders to the new Finnish government is largely concentrated on the role of the populist Finns Party due to its hard line on immigration and criticism of the European Union. Timo Soini has been a member of parliament since 2003 and has led the party for 20 years.

-- Minister of Finance: Alexander Stubb, 47, National Coalition Party.

Stubb will resign as the current prime minister and switch to the position as the minister for finance. As the conservatives receded from the leading position and became the third largest party in parliament, the possibility of ending up in opposition had loomed large. Stubb then emerged successfully from the government formation talks.

-- Minister of Economic Affairs: Olli Regn, 53, Center Party.

While centrist leader Sipila has not much political experience in the European affairs, Rehn has a 10-year record as Commissioner for Enlargement of the Union and has ministerial experience in handling the economic and monetary affairs in Finland.

-- Minister of Transport and Communications: Anne Berner, 51, Center Party.

Berner is a first term MP. She used to be a business person and an influential lobbyist for family owned larger enterprises. Berner got into national focus in 2013 and 2014 when she organized a campaign to finance a children's hospital with private money. As hospitals are publically financed in Finland, the campaign has been controversial.

-- Minister for Municipal Affairs and Development: Anu Vehvilainen, 51, Center Party.

She has been an MP since 1995 and has governmental experience.

-- Minister of Agriculture and Environment: Kimmo Tiilikainen, 48, Center Party.

-- Minister for Social Services and Family Affairs: Juha Rehula, 51, Center Party.

Rehula will take the position for next two years, and will then be succeeded by the Centre Party vice chairman Annika Saarikko, 31.

-- Denfence Minister: Jussi Niinisto, 44, Finns Party.

Niinisto is widely known as an expert in Finnish defence. Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat noted, however, that not everyone likes him as he is perhaps too enthusiastic about traditional national defence instead of contemporary crisis management.

-- Minister for Justice and Labor: Jari Lindstrom, 49, Finns Party.

Lindstrom is a former paper industry union activist. He is the second Finnish minister of justice without a law degree since 1918. Lindstrom made headlines instantly on Thursday as media dug up a 2011 statement by Lindstrom endorsing the death penalty. EU bans death penalties and Finland last executed civilian criminals in the 19th century.

-- Minister for Social Affairs and Health: Hanna Mantyla, 40, Finns Party.

Mantyla is known as a supporter for public health services.

-- Minister of Education and Culture: Sanni Grahn-Laasonen, 32, National Coalition Party.

She is a second term MP, and will have to bear the crunch of public criticism against the cutbacks in education budget.

-- Minister of Interior: Petteri Orpo, 45, National Coalition Party.

He is a third tenure MP.

-- Minister for Foreign Trade and Development: Lenita Toivakka, 52, National Coalition Party.

Toivakka has been the minister for European affairs and foreign trade in Stubb's government, and will retain much of her portfolio.

[Editor: huaxia]
010020070750000000000000011100001342795121