HELSINKI: Nokia is synonymous with mobile phones, but the world-famous Finnish company was in fact started as a paper mill, on the banks of the Nokianvirta river over 100 years ago – hence the name.
Paper is a typical bio-economic based production, using water and wood as prime resources.
A Nokia phone was used when the world’s first GSM call was made in 1991 and the company defined the mobile industry for over a decade.
Nokia’s tax revenues paid for a large share of Finland’s generous social model, but Nokia lost its dominance and was sold to Microsoft in 2014.
In that same year, Finland turned back to nature and launched a bioeconomy strategyto help create future jobs and wealth.
The bioeconomy comprises those parts of the economy that use renewable biological resources from land and sea – such as crops, forests, fish, animals and micro-organisms – to produce food, materials and energy.
“What are the big problems in the world? Lack of resources and lack of bio-diversity. So, when a country is dependent on exports, like Finland is – we have to think what kind of solutions we can offer to these big problems in the entire world,” environment minister Kimmo Tiilikainen explains in an interview with EUobserver.