According to the Finnish Finance Minister Jutta Urpilainen, “it was the Greeks who wanted to keep it secret”. However, the Finnish Supreme Administrative Court decided otherwise, and on May 14, the Government was forced to publish the terms of the contract it signed with Greece in 2012.
Under the agreement Athens pledged to provide financial collateral in exchange for a loan which formed part of the international bailout for the country.
The documents reveal that Finland and the Greece set up three bank accounts into which the money and financial securities used as collateral have since been deposited.
The matter had been referred to the court by the True Finns party and several media outlets, including Helsingin Sanomat. The daily is pleased with this “important and expected” decision —
It will strengthen the principle of the broadest possible implementation of transparency and publicity by government. The public has a right to be informed of all relevant official documents. [...] Helping the weak countries of the eurozone is a naturally difficult and controversial issue in Finland. Confidential documents will only serve to undermine confidence in decisions politicians have taken in the eurocrisis.
In the course of the eurozone crisis, Finland has stood out from among the eurozone states by demanding collateral from countries in difficulty as a condition for financial aid. The deal with Greece served as model for another deal concluded with Spain in July 2012.
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