Finland’s recent accession to the NATO security alliance has significant global economic implications, particularly for its neighboring countries.
By joining NATO, Finland has now doubled the length of member states’ borders with Russia, which is a setback for Russian President Vladimir Putin. The accession document was handed to the US Secretary of State by the Finnish foreign minister at NATO’s headquarters, where Finland’s white-and-blue flag joined a circle of 30 other flags.
The move has implications for the global economy, as it impacts trade relationships and security measures. NATO membership provides Finland with security against potential aggression from Russia and enhances its trade partnerships with NATO members. It also provides a challenge for NATO to help keep its long border with Russia secure, but it is already being included in NATO’s latest defense plans to keep the alliance secure.
In effect, if Finland were invaded or attacked, all NATO members – including the US – would come to its aid. This has implications for trade between Finland and NATO member countries, as increased security measures can sometimes create delays or barriers to trade.
Finland shares a 1,340-km (832-mile) eastern frontier with Russia and after the war in Ukraine began, Helsinki chose the protection of NATO’s Article Five, which says an attack on one member is an attack on all. This decision was supported by 80% of Finnish public opinion following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Finnish President Sauli Niinisto stated that Finland would be a reliable ally and its membership would not be a threat to anyone, as security and stability are crucial elements for a happy life. Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg earlier described it as a proud day for him and the alliance, stating that “Finland will make NATO stronger.”
Russia’s concerns about NATO’s expansion are significant, as it views the move as a “violation of our security and our national interests.” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov warned that Russia would be “watching closely” what happens in Finland, and it will take measures accordingly.
Sweden and Finland – NATO
This news also impacts neighboring countries like Sweden. It has applied for NATO membership along with Finland in May 2022. However, Sweden’s application is still stuck as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accuses Stockholm of embracing Kurdish militants and allowing them to demonstrate on the streets. At the same time, Hungary is also yet to approve Sweden’s NATO application.
Mr. Stoltenberg said the most important thing was that Sweden joined as soon as possible, and the Finnish president said he looked forward to welcoming his Nordic neighbor at NATO’s next summit in Lithuania in July.
Finland joining NATO has both positive and negative implications for the global economy. While it enhances trade relationships between Finland and NATO member countries, it also creates security concerns for Russia and can lead to potential trade barriers. The move may also impact Sweden’s application for NATO membership and could impact the relationship between Russia and its neighboring countries.