Wish list for the new government
Due to the vigorous lobbying efforts, everyone must be aware of the demands made by the retail sector that wine be available in supermarkets and the monopoly of pharmacies be dismantled, but the organisations have other goals as well. The Finnish Grocery Trade Association PTY wants the Land Use and Building Act to be reformed so that sufficient areas of land are zoned for shops and the related infrastructure is built. The PTY also calls for the existence of small shops in rural areas to be secured with investment subsidies. Taxes on food should not be increased.
The Finnish Commerce Federation highlights research, development and innovation in consumer business operations as prerequisites for the sector’s success in the markets that are becoming increasingly digitalised and international. The digitalisation of the sector also affects workforce availability, and this must also be taken into account in training activities in the sector. However, there are not enough Finnish people with the right skills available; instead, skilled workers need to be recruited from other countries, which is why employment-based immigration must be increased. The Finnish Commerce Federation also wants a special electricity tax category for the service sector.
The Finnish Food and Drink Industries’ Federation ETL also points out the need for employment-based immigration, which could be promoted by reducing processing times for residence permits and by abandoning the labour market test. ETL also wants to see labour legislation be brought from the 1940s to the present day and for the right to organise sympathy strikes to be restricted, for example. The food and drink industries also need new innovations and the predictability of public RDI funding to support innovation activities.
International government programme objectives
The Finnish Forest Industries Federation is the Rinki owner organisation with the most international objectives. The EU must understand Finland’s role as a producer of renewable wood and its importance for security in Europe. Finland must also promote our national interests in the EU.
International trade in the forest industry must be facilitated by removing access barriers to markets through trade agreements. Bioeconomy and circular economy can also be supported through trade policies. Innovations must be secured also in the future with RDI funding, by facilitating the availability of skilled international employees and by increasing the number of graduate specialists in the forestry and wood construction industry.
The Chemical Industry Federation of Finland points out that a smooth permit process is required to achieve the carbon neutrality target and investments, and more resources should be allocated to the process. Carbon neutrality must also be included in the updating of degrees in the field of chemistry. Finland’s RDI investments must be raised to 4% by 2030 to improve the country’s competitiveness in international markets and to achieve carbon neutrality targets. The chemical industry also thinks that now is the right time to abandon the concept of waste and start thinking in terms of raw materials. Reusing should, therefore, be made easier by enhancing the efficiency of the end-of-waste process.
Technology Industries of Finland wants to guarantee the availability of energy and raw materials, competitive taxation and a balanced economy. Affordable and secure electricity is a prerequisite for the digital green transition, which is why the European electricity market model must be developed on the market’s terms. It is essential to draw up a national industrial contingency plan to ensure that security of supply is in place. The corporate tax rate must be kept at the current level, and the prerequisites for entrepreneurship and ownership in Finland must be safeguarded. Public finances will be balanced through structural reforms, spending cuts and increased tax revenue.
The owners’ associations of Rinki are also The Finnish Plastics Industries Federation, The Finnish Packaging Association and Lasikeraaminen Teollisuus ry.