The Finnish government is at it again. Previously threatening the latest Greek rescue package by demanding collateral agreements for Finland when other eurozone countries had no such arrangements, now the government is split over a change in rules to approve a bailout.
In the Dec. 9 agreement reached by eurozone countries is a provision to change a requirement for unanimous consent to an 85% consent instead. But opposition within the Finnish government to such a proposal could jeopardize the whole package.
Bloomberg reported that Finance Minister Jutta Urpilainen, head of the Social Democrat party, is opposed to Finland joining the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) if it switches to majority voting, a provision agreed to by the other 16 nations in the eurozone. However, Prime Minister Jyrki Katainen, who heads the National Coalition, says the country has to find a way to stay in the ESM.
The move to a majority vote would expedite matters in case of need for an emergency bailout. Finland, though, is constitutionally opposed to simple approval of such a change and requires a two-thirds vote of its parliament to OK the measure. The Social Democrats are balking.