SuomiAreena 2021

The SuomiAreena democracy festival, the biggest event of its kind in the country, will again bring the people of Finland together for political discussions. Official Nordic co-operation and other major Nordic figures will be involved in several debates on highly topical themes in Helsinki, 12–16 July.

Finland’s Minister for Nordic Co-operation, Thomas Blomqvist, will host a debate at SuomiAreena 2021 on how to make the Nordic Region the most integrated, sustainable and competitive region in the world after the pandemic. We will take stock of Nordic co-operation and discuss with Helena Sarén, Director of Sustainability at Business Finland, and Peter Fellman, Editor-in-Chief of the Swedish financial newspaper Dagens Industri, how to use innovative green solutions to boost economic development in the Nordic Region.

Big names and experts will gather at a Nordic pop-up café in the centre of Helsinki every morning from 08:30–10:00 to discuss topics such as cross-border freedom of movement, sustainability and innovation in industry and agriculture, gender equality and involving young people involvement in Nordic co-operation. 

Members of the Nordic Council and Nordic institutions such as the Nordic Investment Bank, Nordic Innovation, the Nordic Youth Council, the Nordic Green Bank (NEFCO), the Nordic Development Fund, Nordic Culture Point and the Norden Association in Finland will all be there.

One of our debates at SuomiAreena 2021 will be livestreamed on and a recording will be available afterwards here on

Live streaming

Coronapandemin stängde gränserna – hur gör vi nu för att bli den mest integrerade regionen i världen?

12 juli kl. 8.45:

De ungas roll i det nordiska samarbetet – nordiskt

13 juli kl. 8.45

Kan vi rädda Östersjön med regenerativt jordbruk?, 14 juli

14 juli kl. 8.45:

Vägen ut ur krisen är grön och nordisk

15 juli kl. 8.45:

Hur peppa pappor till jämställd föräldraledighet?

16 juli kl. 8.45:

Our debates at SuomiAreena 2021

12 July at 08:45 (EET) – “The pandemic closes borders – what should we do now to become the most integrated region in the world?”

Guaranteeing cross-border freedom of movement for people and businesses is one of the main points of Nordic co-operation but COVID-19 closed borders. What have we learned from the pandemic and how do we move forward to achieve the vision of being the most integrated region in the world by 2030?

Welcome to our Nordic pop-up café where we serve up breakfast and discussions about freedom of movement and progress toward a secure Nordic system of e-identification. What is the next step to enhance integration?

July 13 at 08:45 (EET) – The role of young people in Nordic co-operation. 50 years of young people working together

The Nordic Youth Council is the voice of young people in Nordic co-operation and a unique body anywhere in the world. How can we encourage more young people to take and part in politics and the Nordic Youth Council?

Welcome to our Nordic pop-up café where we serve up breakfast and a discussion about the role of young people in Nordic co-operation. The panelists will talk about their experiences from various decades as members of the Nordic Youth Council and discuss the potential for Nordic co-operation to include young people in political decision-making.

July 14 at 08:45 (EET) – The Baltic Sea and sustainable agriculture

Welcome to our Nordic pop-up café where we serve up breakfast and discussions on how Nordic agriculture could be more environmentally friendly.

We will discuss regenerative agriculture and methods to improve the health of the soil without harming the environment and the Baltic Sea. Good harvests do not require additives but do call for a healthy balance and understanding of the vitality of the soil. All of this will make agriculture sustainable and profitable.

July 14 at 15:00 (EET) – How is Nordic co-operation now, after the COIVD-19 pandemic? (LIVE BROADCAST)

The virus closed borders and the Nordic prime ministers’ vision of the Nordic Region as the most sustainable and integrated region in the world by 2030 had to be put on ice. What happened to Nordic co-operation?

The pandemic showed that not even things like freedom of movement, which we very much take for granted in the Nordic Region, are impervious to pandemics. How is Nordic co-operation doing now? What have we learned from the pandemic? How should the Nordic countries move forward, together, towards a greener, more competitive and socially sustainable Nordic Region? What will it take for the Nordic Region to lead the way to a green transition?

July 15 at 08:45 (EET) - The way out of the crisis is green and Nordic

What will it take to emerge from the crisis and make progress toward a green Nordic Region? What can Finland do – along with the other countries – to make the Nordic Region the most competitive in the world?

Welcome to our Nordic pop-up café where we serve up breakfast and discussions about innovation and how Nordic business can lift the region out of the crisis triggered by the pandemic. We will also use the event to present a tool developed by 100 Nordic companies: Nordic Circular Economy Playbook, which helps companies test their capacity to become fully resilient throughout their production processes.

July 16 at 08:45 (EET) – How can dads encourage equal take up of parental leave entitlement

In autumn 2021, parental leave reform will be introduced in Finland, giving fathers the right to spend more time at home with their children. How can we change parents’, employers’ and societies’ attitudes towards fathers on parental leave? Nordic fathers take up only 10-30% percent of their total parental leave entitlement but are still the best in the world at spending time at home with their young children.

Welcome to our Nordic pop-up café where we serve up breakfast and discussions about the challenges fathers face when they want to share parental leave equally with their partner. How can dads persuade other dads to stay at home longer with their children?