Saturday, December 29, 2007

Report: Finnish Agricultural Subsidy System A Headache

The Finnish agricultural support system is more complicated than others in the EU. The findings are contained in a fresh study compiled by special investigator Kaj Suomela. The report claims that the Finnish agricultural support and monitoring system is more bureaucratic and heavily regulated than others in the EU. Finland's handbook offering guidance on agricultural subsidies is 150 pages long, while the Danish version numbers just 78 pages. Finland is also lagging behind other EU countries in usage of electronic application forms.

Harbour Workers Strike as UPM Switches Ports

Forest products company UPM-Kymmene plans to relocate its marine operations from the Hamina harbour to Kotka port. The company says the new arrangement will take effect from the beginning of next year, and is designed to ensure cost effectiveness, among other things. UPM based its port operations in Hamina in 2006, but was not satisfied with traffic flow at the facility

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Finland: Dangerous Car Chase in Helsinki City Centre

A dangerous car chase in the centre of Helsinki early in the afternoon on Boxing Day put the lives of bystanders at risk. Police have also been kept busy with domestic calls and cases of drink driving. A car pursued by police drove threw red lights and in the on-coming traffic lane. The journey of the white Toyota came to the end beneath the steps of the Kampi shopping mall.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Slower Economic Growth Forecast For Finland

The Finnish Finance Ministry says Finland's economic upturn is levelling off and output growth is slowing down. Economic performance for 2007 is quite close to the autumn forecast, but next year's activity might prove to be weaker than anticipated, mainly due to developments in the global economy.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Finnish Electricity Prices Continue to Rise

The cost of electricity for domestic use is on the rise. Nearly all of Finland's largest electric companies have either increased prices or will increase prices early next year. For example, two of the largest energy companies Fortum and Helsingin Energia have already increased rates. Energy suppliers Vattenfall and Savon Voima are also among those companies which plan to raise prices next year. Rates will jump anywhere from six percent to twenty percent.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Doctor Shortage Worsens at Finnish Public Health Centres

The shortage of doctors at Finland's public health centres is getting worse. The Finnish Medical Association calculates that about 10 percent of posts at the health centres are vacant. In October, more than 350 public health doctors' posts were vacant. Last year all doctors' positions were filled in half of Finland's health centres. Now only 42 percent of the clinics have such a good staffing situation. The situation is worst in small municipal health centres. In those with fewer than six doctors' posts, one position in four is vacant.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Finnish Winter Darkness Depresses Many

Nearly half of Finns suffer from the seemingly enduring darkness of the winter period. In an article in the Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet, National Public Health Institute Researcher Timo Partonen said that 40 percent of over 30-year olds suffer from symptoms such as fatigue and a craving for sweets during the winter.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Finland Falls Short in Helping Human Trafficking Victims

Finland often fails to identify victims of human trafficking, according to a steering group from the Ministry of Labour. Hundreds of human trafficking victims are estimated to pass through Finland annually. But for many victims, Finland is the final destination.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Finland: Salmonella Found in Tainted Water Patients

As many as 15,000 people may have been exposed to stomach infections following the contamination of drinking water in the town of Nokia last weekend. Latest samples from patients reveal the presence of both salmonella and kambylo bacteria, reports the National Public Health Institute.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Water Contaminated: Scores Seek Treatment in Nokia Finland

Human error at the Nokia Waste Water Treatment Plant has seen scores of residents coming down with severe stomach ailments. The authorities are distributing drinking water and disinfecting the water supply in an effort to restore normalcy.