Browsing by Subject "Finland - foreign policy"

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  • Seppälä, Jussi (2004)
    This licentiate thesis analyses the first Finnish intergovernmental conference (IGC), resulting in the Treaty of Amsterdam. The study covers Finnish policy regarding the development of the common foreign and security policy (CFSP), and in particular the development of the Union as a foreign and security political actor. The theoretical assumption of the study is that the two basic elements of the Union, federalism and intergovernmentalism, offer a relevant point of departure for studying this question. This assumption is deemed to be valid both in general as well as in the empirical case study of Finnish policy. On the one hand, the direction of foreign policy and defence largely defines the development of the Union from the point of view of federalism and intergovernmentalism. On the other hand, foreign policy and defence are the core questions that test the willingness of countries to surrender their sovereignty to the EU, thereby defining the member states' orientation towards federalism and intergovernmentalism. The main empirical goal of the study was to ascertain how federal or intergovernmental the Finnish policy was, particularly in developing the CFSP. Using a four-scale classification (strictly intergovernmental, closer to intergovernmental, closer to federal, and purely federal) of Finnish general EU goals, general CFSP goals and IGC goals, clear results are found. Finnish policy shifted markedly from positions closer to intergovernmentalism to closer to federal, in some respects even further towards federalism. Firstly, concerning qualified majority voting, the dominance of the intergovernmental unanimity principle ceased to be the Finnish objective, but decisions by majority were seen as a necessity instead. Even more importantly, the acceptance of a potential defence core during 1996 indicated a new approach, which saw the interests of Finland as largely identical to those of a federalizing Union. It is shown that the role of Prime Minister Lipponen was pivotal in this development. The main empirical sources have been official public documents and an extensive press material. This manuscript should also be read as the first draft of a doctoral thesis covering Finnish CFSP policy more extensively towards the present day.