Morning headlines: Friday 29th May 2020

News Now Finland morning news headlines and weather first, every weekday at 09:00.


Restaurant opening law to get Parliament vote today

A law that could allow Finland’s restaurants, cafes and bars to open up for business again will be voted on by Members of Parliament today. According to the proposals restaurants will be able to open on Monday serving alcohol until 10pm and food until 11pm. As a coronavirus precaution they are only allowed to take in 50% occupancy, with everyone seated – no standing at the bar. The legislation has taken longer than anticipated to get through the parliamentary process because the original draft from the Government was halted by the Constitutional Affairs Committee which demanded amendments. Read more at our original story here.

New: Economy is officially in recession

Finland’s economy officially plunged into recession during the first quarter of this year, as the effects of the coronavirus were felt. In the period January to March the country’s GDP volume decreased by 0.9% compared with the previous quarter according to figures released by Statistics Finland on Friday morning. That means GDP has contracted for two consecutive quarters putting the country into recession with indicators even before the coronavirus crisis began.

Body of missing fisherman found
The body of an elderly man, reported missing when he went fishing in Northern Ostrobothnia, has been found. The man went out in a rowing boat on Thursday evening to check his nets in Kekolahti bay and when he didn’t return as scheduled his relatives started a search and reported him missing to the local emergency centre. By 22:00 the Turku Sea Rescue Centre had been notified and launched a search. The rowing boat was found first, and the man’s body was found by a rescue helicopter around 01:00 on Friday morning.


Poll: Almost 70% of Finns would take coronavirus vaccine 

A new poll by Uutissuomalainen newspaper group finds that 69% of Finns would take a vaccine for Covid-19 if it becomes available. A thousand people were quested for the survey last week which finds support for taking the vaccine rises to 85% of people aged over 70-years old. Sixteen percent of people say they’re unlikely to take it and another 6% say they definitely don’t plan on taking it. About 10% of people are not sure what they would do but overall, men have a slightly more positive attitude about getting a coronavirus vaccination than women, according to the survey.

Half of Finland’s foreigners live in Helsinki region

As many as half of people in Finland with foreign-born backgrounds are living in the capital city region. New figures from Statistics Finland show that there were 423,494 people with a foreign background living in Finland at the end of 2019 and 209,108 lived in the Helsinki metropolitan area. Some 79% of people with Somali backgrounds and 70% of people with Indian backgrounds are living in the capital region, with large percentages of people with Chinese, Philippines, Estonian and Iraqi backgrounds in the south of the country.

Friday morning weather

It’s a sunny and warm start to Friday morning across most of the country, but with some more cloud cover over Lapland and cooler temperatures in single digits in the far north. Elsewhere expect temperatures between +10°C and +12°C. As the day goes on some showers will move in to Lapland and expect temperature highs on Friday between +14°C and +18°C in central and southern areas, and +8°C to +14°C in the north.

Finnish Meteorological Institute forecast for Friday morning 29th May 2020 / Credit: FMI