New Bank Of Finland President Proposed
Olli Rehn has been proposed as the next President of the Bank of Finland. He is currently working as a member of the Bank’s Board and previously served in parliament as a Centre Party MP and as Minister of Economy. Rehn, from Mikkeli, has wide ranging EU experience as he worked in three different senior EU Commissioner roles. The current Bank of Finland President Erkki Liikanen finishes his work in the summer, and if approved by President Niinistö, Rehn would take up the seven year term as Liikanen’s successor.
Stockmann Reports Earnings Loss
Department store company Stockmann is reporting a loss this morning. From January to March 2018, the company made a loss of €24.8 million – a slightly smaller loss than the same time last year. In terms of sales, the company had net sales of €202.4 million in the first quarter of this year, which is down significantly from the €216 million they sold from January to March 2017.
Finland’s ‘Azerbaijan Lobbyist’ MP Was Election Observer
Former Left Alliance MP Jaakko Laakso served as an OSCE observer at Azerbaijan’s presidential elections for a Bulgarian company with a questionable reputation . Earlier this week it was revealed that Laakso violated the Council of Europe’s rules, when he was named in a report that said he acted as a lobbyist for Azerbaijan. According to the Council of Europe report, Azerbaijan has sought to bribe members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe so that they didn’t criticize human rights violations in the former Soviet Republic. Laakso admitted working as a lobbyist, but denied taking bribes during the 16 years he was a Finnish MP. Now, Laakso says he worked as an election observer in Azerbaijan for a Bulgarian organisation whose conclusion about how free and fair Azerbaijan elections are, is in stark contrast to the OSCE’s own observer mission conclusions.
NBI: Drugs Offenses Continue To Rise
Finland’s National Bureau of Investigation says the number of drugs offenses continued to grow last year, compared with the year before. Overall, drugs offenses increased by slightly more than 10%. The number of serious narcotics offenses increased by more than 8%. According to the NBI the growth in recorded crime doesn’t necessarily mean there’s an increase in drugs crime, but it does point to a rise in drug use.
Friday Morning Weather
There’s a brighter start to the day across most of the country, according to the Finnish Meteorological Institute FMI. There’s still a lot of cloud cover around, but much more early sunshine than in recent days.