The Finnish Commerce Federation has announced its Government Programme objectives for the 2019 parliamentary elections. Commerce supports well-being, which is based on work, growth and environment. The Finnish Commerce Federation offers concrete solutions—for example, for increasing employment.

Commerce as an individual sector is the largest employer as well as the largest employer of young people. The sector employs nearly 450,000 people. Commerce makes up around 15% of the national economy in Finland and is responsible for one fifth of the national economy’s growth in recent years. Commerce plays a very significant role in the Finnish national economy.

It is essential for the Finnish national economy that the employment rate will increase to at least 75% during the next government’s term.

“We need ambitious employment actions. Commerce wants to continue to offer work, livelihood and well-being in all of Finland. For this reason, we have prepared the Employment, Economy and Climate Future Programme 2019–2023, in which we present concrete solutions to decision-makers,” says Mikko Helander, Chairman of the Finnish Commerce Federation and President and CEO of K Group.

One of the main goals of the Finnish Commerce Federation is to reduce the rate of income tax. It will reduce the heavy taxation of services, improve competitive strength and create economic growth.

Another important goal is that accepting work would always be financially worthwhile. Bureaucracy traps must be dismantled and, for example, the salary of part-time work must be integrated into social security in real time. Furthermore, companies should be allowed to deviate from the obligation to offer work to part-time employees in certain cases when the case concerns, for example, employing long-term unemployed persons, immigrants or young people at risk of social exclusion.

The Finnish Commerce Federation supports fair competition and well-functioning markets. It is important that everyone has fair conditions of competition, whether operating in Finland or abroad.

“Responsible free markets and competition are always to the advantage of customer. Therefore, it is justified to continue the deregulation of alcohol sales and start dismantling the monopoly in the pharmacy sector”, says Mikko Helander.

“Finnish commerce is facing intense international competition. Therefore, the taxation and customs regulations that favour international e-commerce must be abolished and fair conditions of competition for the domestic commerce must be ensured”, says Mikko Helander.

Mikko Helander also states that car taxation should gradually shift from taxing the purchase to taxing the use. It will improve the competitive strength of the domestic car sales.

More information:

Mikko Helander, Chairman of the Finnish Commerce Federation and President and CEO of K Group, tel. +358 (0)10 532 2301, mikko.helander(at)kesko.fi

Juhani Pekkala, Managing Director, Finnish Commerce Federation, tel. +358 (0)400 419 560, juhani.pekkala(at)kauppa.fi

The Finnish Commerce Federation represents commerce – the largest sector of economic life. Commerce employs around 300,000 people in Finland. The Federation has around 7,000 member companies and represents both retail and wholesale commerce in industry policy and labour market lobbying. www.kauppa.fi