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Åland, the Nordic Council and the EU

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Nordic Cooperation

Since 1970, Åland has had its own representation in the Nordic Council. The Parliament of Åland appoints two representatives to the Council, who together with the representatives appointed by the Åland Government, form the Ålandic delegation to the Nordic Council.

The Åland Government also participates in the work of the Nordic Council of Ministers.

Hello Norden is the Nordic Council of Ministers’ information service. Hello Norden’s remit is to make it easier for individuals to move freely in the Nordic countries. Nordic citizens are informed by Hello Norden about the rules that apply when they move, commute and study, among other things, in different Nordic countries.

The Nordic Institute on Åland is a cultural institution subject to the Nordic Council of Ministers (NMR). The Institute’s remit is to strengthen Åland’s cultural life through contacts with other Nordic countries and by working with local cultural figures, and to present Åland’s culture in other parts of the Nordic region.

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Åland in the EU

Foreign affairs is not transferred to Åland under the Autonomy Act, but remains under the control of the Finnish Government. Even so, Åland has a degree of influence on international treaties that contain provisions relating to areas where Åland is the competent authority. The Autonomy Act states that an international treaty of this kind entered into by Finland requires the consent of the Parliament of Åland to become valid also in Åland.

Thus, when Finland became a member of the European Union in 1995, Åland’s accession was dependent on the consent of the Parliament. After the population had expressed its opinion in two separate referendums and it had been decided that Åland’s relationship to the EU would be regulated in a special protocol, the Parliament of Åland expressed its consent. The protocol, which is part of Finland’s treaty of accession, states that Åland shall be regarded as a third territory with respect to indirect taxation. It also contains certain special provisions relating to the purchase of real property and the right to conduct a business in Åland, and confirms Åland’s special status under international law.

The Euro was introduced as the currency of Åland on January 1st 2002.

The page was last updated on 28.06.2013 kl 19:10