Eveliina Heinäluoma is impressed by Finland’s standing in the EU- “It’s time to make a decision”

The restoration regulation has been a contentious issue in Finland’s relations with the EU. Initially, Finland voted against the proposal, but later abstained from voting. However, their position has now shifted to a firm “no.” Member of Parliament Eveliina Heinäluoma is critical of the government’s handling of the regulation, as it seems inconsistent with their previous stance.

The restoration regulation aims to impose binding obligations on member states to improve the state of nature in various habitats. Despite Finland’s initial opposition, the proposal narrowly passed the Council of Member States last summer. During subsequent negotiations, flexibilities were added to the regulation to reduce costs and give member countries greater control over restoration efforts.

When the council voted on the regulation in November, Finland abstained, which did not count as a vote in qualified majority decisions. Hungary’s change of vote has added complexity to the situation, as the EU presidency is seeking member states to change their minds and vote in favor of the regulation. However, Finland remains resolute in its decision to vote against it.

Minister of Environment Kai Mykkänen expressed his dissatisfaction with the situation and emphasized the need for consistency in EU decision-making. Heinäluoma believes that Finland missed an opportunity to promote a green transition by not supporting the amended regulation. She compares it to past directives that had positive impacts on Finnish businesses and the environment, urging the government to prioritize coherence and consistency in their decisions.

In conclusion, Finland’s position on the EU’s restoration regulation remains firm despite earlier changes in their stance. The government must carefully consider its actions and prioritize coherence and consistency in its decisions if they want to promote environmental sustainability and support Finnish businesses simultaneously.

By Sophia Gonzalez

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