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News, 1/29/2015

Group of influential EU figures acquaint themselves with Finnish bioeconomy

Ministry of Employment and the Economy  28.1.2015 

The Ministry of Employment and the Economy (MEE) has invited a number of influential EU figures from Brussels to Finland to learn about the theory and practice of the Finnish bioeconomy. The group of more than 10 people includes top-level civil servants from the various departments of the European Commission, as well as the EU ambassadors of leading bioeconomy countries.

The purpose of the visit is to present Finland as a leading bioeconomy country with an ability to utilise forest-based biomass and the diversity of nature in a versatile and sustainable manner.  Meanwhile, the significance of collaboration in the development of Finnish and European bioeconomy will be emphasised.

The visit begins on Thursday, 29 January with a meeting with Minister of Economic Affairs Jan Vapaavuori in addition to a presentation of Finland's bioeconomy strategy at the Ministry of Employment and the Economy. Sixten Sunabacka, Strategic Director at the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, Hannele Pokka, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of the Environment, and Tiina Rytilä, State Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry will speak to the group on strategy work and the possibilities of the bioeconomy. These three ministries are responsible for the implementation of Finland's bioeconomy strategy. In the morning the group will also hear a presentation on the biorefinery project of Metsä Fibre in Äänekoski.

After this the guests will move on to the south-east of Finland to learn about practical aspects of the Finnish bioeconomy. While en route there will be an outdoor presentation of sustainable forestry, harvester technology, and nature tourism in Luumäki.

In the afternoon the guests will be shown the Biofore concept at the UPM Kaukas Mill, combining the bio industry and the forest industry, while developing new innovations in an environmentally sustainable fashion.

On Friday the group will visit the Stora Enso Research Centre in Imatra, where a key topic will be fibre-based new-generation packaging solutions. Also in the day's programme will be a briefing on the operations of the Nuijamaa border-crossing station. As guests of the City of Porvoo the group will learn about the wooden architecture of Porvoo, and they will also hear about the Finnish National Wood Construction Programme from Development Manager Markku Karjalainen of the Ministry of Employment and the Economy. 

Further information:

Strategic Director Sixten Sunabacka, MEE, tel. +358 40 036 6148

Development Manager Jussi Manninen, MEE, tel. +358 40 535 5947

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Updated 1/29/2015

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