Sauli Niinistö and Arthur Parfenchikov have discussed the development of cooperation between Finland and Karelia in various spheres.
Today, the President of Finland Sauli Niinistö and the Head of Karelia Arthur Parfenchikov has met in Helsinki. Their talks have marked the beginning of a two-day visit of
Karelia's official delegation to Finland. The meeting has also been attended by Russia's Ambassador to Finland Pavel Kuznetsov.
The President of Finland has welcomed Arthur Parfenchikov by saying that Karelia and Finland are close neighbors. Mr. Niinistö has added that Karelia and Finland have a
lot in common and has expressed his hope for successful Russia-Finland cooperation in the future.
Arthur Parfenchikov in his welcoming speech has stressed that Finland has traditionally been one of the major Karelia's trade partners: in 2017, Finland accounted for
almost 25% of the foreign trade turnover in Karelia. During this period, the volume of foreign trade between Karelia and Finland increased by 34% and amounted to 325.4 mln
US dollars. The recent increase in the trade turnover between two countries has also continued this year.
The Head of Karelia has also talked about his plans for this working visit: "We have scheduled a number of meetings and negotiations with our Finnish colleagues from
government agencies and business community. These negotiations will be aimed both at discussing the current state of our interactions and the prospects for cooperation
development and intensification."
The participants of the meeting have acknowledged that Karelia is open for business operation and joint cooperation projects implementation, with the Government of
Karelia being ready to support Finnish business entities which will demonstrate interest in developing cooperation with Karelian partners.
"We have created favorable conditions for the investors and we continuously improve these conditions, providing our investors with necessary state support, including
favorable land leasing terms and tax preferences," said Arthur Parfenchikov.
One of the priority topics chosen for the discussion by the Head of Karelia was the development of cross-border cooperation, including the improvement of infrastructure
on the Russian-Finnish border, the creation of a special economic zone in Vyartsilya settlement, and the implementation of various initiatives in business, environment
protection, culture and cross-border cooperation.