Minister of Finance Jutta Urpilainen gains approval for proposal to set up Ec...

Ministry of Finance 31.1.2014 9.55
Press release -

An independent council formed on the basis of scientific expertise will be created in Finland to review and assess economic policy and how the policy objectives are being met.

- Several countries including Sweden, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands have reported positive experiences of independent expert bodies and their role in economic policy assessment. It’s important that we too make better use of independent research for purposes of assessing our economic policy, says Minister of Finance Jutta Urpilainen.

Among the council’s roles will be to assess the objectives of economic policy, the extent to which those objectives are being met, the effectiveness of the policy tools employed, the coordination of different policy areas and how they tie in with other areas of public policy. The council will weigh the success of fiscal policy with particular reference to economic growth and stability, employment and the long-term sustainability of public finances.

- Improving the sustainability of public finances will require first and foremost an effective employment and growth policy. Likewise the success of economic policy must increasingly be considered from the point of view of long-term sustainability, says Minister Urpilainen.

The Council can also provide its view on which areas of economic policy need more research evidence and on this basis commission economic policy studies. The council has no direct say in economic policy decisions.

The Council will work in conjunction with the Government Institute for Economic Research, but not as part of the Institute’s organisation. The Government Institute for Economic Research will provide administrative services to support the Council.

The Council will prepare and publish an annual assessment of the Government’s economic policy and its performance.

The Chair of the Council and its four members will be appointed by the Government for a five-year term. To ensure that the Council has the necessary breadth of scientific expertise, the Chair and three Council members should represent different areas of economics, while one member should represent a high level of expertise in other social sciences. At least one of the Council members should be involved in an international scientific community.

For purposes of preparation and execution of matters the Council will have a Secretary-General, who will be employed by the Government Institute for Economic Research. The Secretary-General will be appointed by the Ministry of Finance.

The Government Decree on the Economic Policy Council was adopted by the Government on 30 Jan 2014, and the Council will start up during 2014.

Further information: Ministerial Adviser Hannele Kerola, tel. 358 2955 30199