According to Minister Anne Berner, Finland and the other Nordic countries have the resources to succeed globally in any industry, but Nordics need to improve their cooperation in the business sector.
Finland holds the current Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers. According to Anne Berner (Centre Party), Finnish Minister for Nordic Cooperation, Finland and the Finnish innovation sector can benefit in very concrete ways from the Presidency. The themes of the Presidency this year are water, nature and people.
“The Presidency gives Finland an opportunity to call attention to issues that are important to us and which can be promoted in cooperation with other Nordic countries. This year we are focusing on our strengths in water know-how, cleantech, biofuels, nature tourism and digitalisation,” says Berner.
According to Berner, the Nordic countries should develop corporate cooperation among themselves to improve access to capital.
“Small Nordic countries gain more power when we cooperate. The Nordic region already enjoys prestige and credibility abroad, and it makes sense to develop our know-how together. The Nordic countries share the same interests on the global scale, and companies stand a good chance to gain visibility by profiling themselves as Nordics.”
According to Minister Berner, the Nordic countries can succeed in any area they choose.
“The Millennium Technology Prize is a prime example of how Finland’s technology sector can be promoted.”
“Who could have imagined that Finland would develop an important game industry sector? The principle is to establish new companies in the wake of a strong player, not only in the same sector but also in other areas, and the result is the world’s best game expertise. We must reap the benefits of this more widely using our pan-Nordic network,” Minister Berner explains.
According to Anne Berner, it is not the task of society to steer the country into certain sectors of the economy or business but to support and facilitate the emergence of new types of business as much as possible. Although Finland has already proven its know-how in mobile technology, data security and cleantech, the Minister sees all areas as potentially promising options for the future.
“We must not think that Finland and the other Nordic countries can be experts in only certain fields. Startups can pop up anywhere.”
The attractiveness and influence of the Nordic brand can be enhanced in many ways, says Minister Berner.
“For instance, I have on many occasions pointed out the Millennium Technology Prize as a prime example of how the reputation of Finland in the technology sector can be promoted to draw attention to Finnish know-how. The prize will bring us new researchers and scientists.“
Text: Laura Manas
Read also our article on Silicon-Valley-based Nordic Innovation House that assists Nordic startups in expanding to the US market.