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Post at: May 20 2022

India-Finland Relations

Recent Context

  • On 19th April, 2022 Finland’s Minister of Economic Affairs met India’s Union Minister of State Science & Technology.
  • Finland is keen to step up cooperation with India in areas like Waste-to-energy, Low carbon mobility and Communication.

Highlights of the Meet

  • Virtual Network Centre on Quantum Computing
    • India and Finland will establish an Indo-Finnish Virtual Network Centre on Quantum Computing .
    • It will attempt to stimulate innovative research and development projects to address needs of both nations.
    • The Indian side has identified three premier institutes, IIT-Madras, IISER-Pune and C-DAC-Pune, for the Virtual Network Centre on Quantum Computing.
  • Participation in Biobank Project
    • The Finnish Minister also invited India to explore the possibility of deeper cooperation in Finland’s Biobank project.
  • Green transition
    • Both Countries discussed Finnish offerings in energy and related sectors including grid balancing and grid stability, biofuels, green hydrogen, energy storage and waste-to-energy, among other things.

India – Finland Bilateral Relations

  • Finland and India have traditionally enjoyed warm and friendly relations. 
  • 2019 marked 70 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Economic and Commercial Relations

  • In 2020, India’s total trade (goods and services) with Finland was US$ 2.3 billion and is in India’s favour.
  • In 2020–2021, Finland was India’s 69th largest trade partner globally, and the 11th largest within the EU. 
  • Similarly, in 2020, India was Finland’s 27th largest trade partner globally, and the 6th largest within Asia.

  • Finland’s top imported goods from India (Jan-Dec 2020):
    • Medicinal, pharmaceutical products
    • Articles of apparel and clothing accessories
    • Textile yarn, fabrics, made up articles
    • Manufactures of metals
    • Electric machinery and parts
  • India’s top imported goods from Finland (Jan-Dec 2020):
    • Machinery for special industries
    • Electric machinery and parts
    • Paper, paperboard and articles thereof
    • Metalliferous ores and metal scrap
    • General industrial machinery

Information Technology and Emerging Technology

  • A Joint Declaration of Intent signed between MEITY and Minister of Economy in Finland on cooperation in the field of Digitalisation was signed in November 2019.
  • Finland is a leader in 5G/6G technology and Nokia is a world leader in providing the associated infrastructure. 
  • During the 4th Joint Committee meeting on S & T in November 2020, 5G was identified as one of the three areas for future collaboration between India and Finland.
  • In March 2021, both countries announced a digital partnership in future ICT, Mobile Technology and Digital Education.
  • On April 21, 2022, A finland International school has opened in pune with the help of Finland government.

Cultural Relations

  • Finland is very receptive to Indian culture.
  • There are several Indian dance schools and Yoga schools in Finland.
  • Cultural events are organised regularly by Indian Associations and other cultural organisations promoting Indian dance and music (both classical as well as contemporary). 
  • Finnish India Society has been active since 1956.

Indian Community:

  • There are around 14,490 (end of 2019) Persons of Indian Origin (6751 NRIs and 7739 OCIs) in Finland. Most live in the capital Helsinki and surrounding regions. Most Indians who settled during 1980s and 1990s were from Punjab and are engaged mostly in the restaurant business.

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