Niinistö on self-sufficiency

Speaker of Parliament Sauli Niinistö (National Coalition Party) thinks (fi) Finland should become more self-sufficient in energy and agriculture. That would mean higher agricultural subsidies, but "self-sufficiency is worth paying a little." He predicts that due to China's rise global competition for energy and natural resources will intensify, and Finland should prepare itself.

I have to say I'm not convinced by Niinistö's analysis. Energy self-sufficiency would be nice, but is currently far off. Agricultural self-sufficiency seems damned pointless in the age of the European Union. If it's good for anything, then surely its benefits include the opportunity to buy agricultural produce from countries in which the climate is better suited for that sort of thing.

Niinistö's problem is that any thoughts he might want to offer on agriculture will inevitably be seen in light of the 2012 presidential election. I'd be surprised if a large majority of people who read the linked article didn't consider the possibility that he's trying to ingratiate himself to farm-subsidy-loving Centre Party voters.

Update: Here's an English version of the linked article.

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