From a Finnish perspective, green recovery opens up a wealth of opportunities, because low-carbon and energy-efficient solutions form a significant part of Finnish exports.
The European Commission has published its own recovery package The Recovery Plan for Europe, with emphasis on near-term investments and the digital and green double transition. The Commission aims to increase InvestEU funding and channel it in particular to digitalization and building of sustainable infrastructure. A new strategic investment-funding instrument is also in planning stages.
The recovery package will go through EU decision-making bodies during the summer and autumn, and implementation is scheduled to begin in January 2021.
The Commission also plans to strengthen the Horizon innovation-funding framework with particular focus on health as well as the green and digital transition. In September, a Green Deal call will open under Horizon 2020. The call’s 11 themes include several that are of interest to Finnish companies, including closing the industrial carbon cycle, energy and resource-efficient buildings and green airports and ports.
In early June, the Finnish government published its first green recovery package as part of a larger supplementary budget proposal. Funding targets include major energy-subsidy pilot projects, public transport, development of nature tourism and wood construction. The national climate fund operated by The Finnish State Development Company Vake is to receive EUR 300 million in additional capital. Additional issuing authority will also be granted to Business Finland for various purposes, including additional funding for the anchor company campaign.
It is interesting to see, how domestic climate recovery will continue from here on. Reports by working groups led by Vihriälä and Hetemäki as well as the Finnish climate panel have all highlighted the importance of clean energy production, sustainable transport infrastructure, bio and circular economy and new clean solutions. It is easy to agree with these recommendations – they combine positive effects on the economy with positive climate impacts.
The best scenario for Finnish companies is, when domestic recovery creates market demand and opportunities for piloting, and EU projects offer a way to forge international partnerships and gain access to European value chains.
So, how best to keep up with different funding and subsidy mechanisms and gain access to projects? Business Finland’s programs offer an excellent vantage point. Programs share current information and provide a channel for networking with potential partners, as well as opportunities to join innovation projects developing low-carbon and circular economy solutions.
Business Finland’s EU experts are also an important source of information. They actively follow the development of EU innovation funding and programs and organize info events on upcoming funding calls. Our experts are also happy to advise on EU funding matters. Have a look at our website for further information.