Press Releases

    For information only - not an official document

    UNIS/OUS/261
    21 October 2014

    Re-issued as received

    Finland and UNIDO sign a major cooperation agreement

    VIENNA/HELSINKI, 20 October (United Nations Industrial Development Organization) - In continuation of the already existing close cooperation, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the Government of Finland today agreed to assist the economic development and trade capacity of Least Developed Countries (LDCs).

    Finland will provide EUR 4.2 million to support UNIDO in the years 2014 and 2015 in the programme areas of trade capacity-building, food security through agribusiness and agro-industry, as well as the creation of green employment through sustainable forest utilization and management.

    UNIDO Director General, Li Yong, and Lenita Toivakka, Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade, exchanged letters confirming the agreement during a meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland.

    Director General Li hailed the agreement as "an important step in the further strengthening of relations between UNIDO and Finland, and as a best practice example of donor relations, as it helps UNIDO achieve strategic objectives set by our Member States and donors". He added that it would "help ensure progress on the path towards the achievement of inclusive and sustainable industrial development".

    Finnish support for UNIDO trade capacity-building and agribusiness development programmes will contribute in particular towards strengthening the capacity of Least Developed Countries to meet trade-related standards and trade capacity in the agribusiness sector.

    A particular emphasis will be given to promoting South-South trade and to strengthening links to the Enhanced Integrated Framework, which supports LDCs as they further integrate into the global trading system.

    The third component of the agreement will support the engagement of business partners, notably in a UNIDO project to improve regional collaboration on forestry and wood industry education and training in Malawi, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The project will lead to the creation of green jobs by focusing on sustainable forest utilization and management in southern Africa.

    * *** *

    For more information, please contact:

    Stein Hansen
    Chief, UNIDO Strategic Donor Relations Unit
    Email: S.Hansen[at]unido.org