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Sakari Kouti’s speech at the party conference in Pori

Dear friends,

The Globe is shrinking and Finland is becoming more international. There are already 200,000 foreign-language residents in the Helsinki region and the number is expected to double in the next 15 years. There are already 400,000 foreign-speakers throughout Finland. In addition to the Helsinki region, strong growth is expected at least in Southwest Finland.

As a result, for example, Espoo is already trilingual. English-speaking nurseries and education are available, although there should be more of these.

No political party in Finland has offered membership in English. Now the Greens are the first, because the newly founded Green Sisu uses English, in addition to Finnish.

A foreign-language resident may be working in a game company, be a researcher, student, or a refugee. Now he has a path to join the Finnish Greens.

Hopefully this will bring us more members and more votes in the elections. In Parliamentary elections only Finnish citizens are eligible to vote, which in turn requires Finnish or Swedish language skills. However, citizens of other countries can vote in municipal and euro elections.

If the immigrant plans to stay permanently in Finland, Green Sisu encourages his or her integration and Finnish language learning. However, these can take years, during which time English is needed. In addition, newcomers can learn Finnish culture and, in turn, we can learn the specificities of their cultures.

Of course, a Finnish citizen who is interested in internationality or a Finnish citizen living abroad can join. Perhaps there would be new member candidates in Berlin.

Through centuries, learning of foreign cultures has led to the development of the world and a better understanding of others. Being active helps to find friends and social relationships, and have fun and get interesting content at the same time.

Intercultural interaction and networking do not only need to take place within Finland’s borders, and Green Sisu also focuses on internationalization and international exchange of information and networking. We believe that many of the great problems that cross our borders today can be solved internationally and in a positive spirit, openly discussing and sharing information.

/ Sakari Kouti