The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry is responsible for administrative tasks related to agriculture, rural development, forestry, fisheries, game, reindeer husbandry, the safety and quality of foodstuffs and agricultural production inputs, animal health and welfare, plant health, land surveying and the joint use of geographic information, and water supply issues. International issues and cooperation affect all of these sectors, and the ministry works internationally to promote fruitful collaboration and represent Finnish interests.
International issues are dealt with by all of the ministry’s departments and within almost all of our units. Since Finland joined the European Union in 1995 the ministry has considered work relating to the EU as integral elements of our national policies rather than as “international affairs” – not least because more than 80% of the legislation in our sector is derived from EU legislation.
Our international work encompasses contacts with various international organisations, cooperation with certain other regions and bilateral relations with different countries. These tasks are also carried out in most of the ministry’s units. The ministry also supports the international work of agencies, institutes and other stakeholders working within our administrative sector, including interest groups and researchers. The ministry’s officials also work to make Finland better known and advance our goals in international contexts.