In important political stances and policy outlines, the European Union has adopted improving competitiveness and concurrently fostering sustainable development as its guiding principles. A competitive and productive economy is an essential foundation for the future prosperity of the citizens of Finland and Europe. Finland and the rest of our continent must be seen as functioning operating environments in order to attract companies, employment and investment. Companies must be able to operate profitably and competitively in the global market so that they can create added value to benefit society and take care of their social and environmental responsibilities.
European decision-makers should emphasise the significance of the Lisbon Strategy and consider all elements of sustainable development – economics, prosperity and the environment – equally in their work. Sustainable development cannot exist without competitiveness.
Using renewable natural resources, wood in particular, yields clear economic and environmental benefits. European policies on the sustainable use of natural resources do not emphasise these sufficiently. Wood is a renewable and recyclable resource. In addition, products made from wood bind carbon; paper and wood products are CO2 neutral, unlike many other materials.
Wood is a strategically important natural resource and raw material for Europe. European forests are managed sustainably and have bright futures. EU policies must emphasise clearly the benefits of using renewable natural resources; using wood as a raw material must be considered acceptable and recommendable.
For further information, please contact:
Riku Eksymä, Manager, EU-affairs and trade policy,
Finnish Forest Industries Federation, tel. +358 9 132 6643, firstname.lastname@example.org