Strikes cost economy nearly €1bn, business lobby warns | Yale News

EK director Jyri Häkämies urged the government to speed up its labor market reforms.

Former NCP economic affairs minister EK director Zairi Hakamis called for corporate tax cuts (file photo from 2023). Image: Terhi Leimu / Yle

According to Jiri Hakkamez, Director General of Finnish Industries (EK), said that if the planned political strikes next week go ahead as planned, the impact of the political strikes on Finland's GDP will rise to almost one billion euros. Heckames was interviewed by commercial television broadcaster MTV on Saturday.

„We are really facing losses. We have three days of strikes behind us with losses of almost half a billion euros. If next week's strikes work like the previous strikes, we will face losses of almost one billion. to Finland's GDP,” Hakkamees said.

Unions have been holding a series of walkouts since last fall against the right-wing government's plans to weaken workers' positions and weaken the social safety net. In late January, there was widespread work activity in various sectors.

Häkämies, on the other hand, urged the government to speed up its controversial labor-market reforms and called on unions to end political strikes.

„Political strikes of the same scale are not possible in Sweden,” he pointed out.

In order to accelerate economic growth, the EK proposes temporary corporate tax cuts for companies investing in the green transition.

The rail strike begins on Monday

Next week's strikes will begin on Monday, for example, with almost all local and long-distance trains coming to a standstill. Some food workers will be off the job starting Monday. Starting Tuesday, job activities include daycare centers, heavy industry and energy production.

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Prime Minister Peter OrboWin's National Alliance Party has traditionally had close ties to the EK. The business group has given a large share of its campaign donations to NCP candidates in the current presidential election and last year's parliamentary election, which the NCP won.

In Sunday's presidential election, the NCP Alexander Stubb Confronts Becca Havisto (Green), contesting as an independent.

Heckamis, 62, was a National Alliance Party MP from 1999 to 2012. He served as Minister of Economic Affairs from 2007 to 2011, as well as Minister of Defense and Head of Statehood. In November 2012 he stepped down as director of EK with immediate effect.

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