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The war in Ukraine is expected to increase the need for financial counselling for entrepreneurs in Finland

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The Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service provides counselling for entrepreneurs in financial distress. The service was developed in Finland’s Early Warning project supported by the European Commission, which was successfully completed in March. The European Early Warning network, whose activities Finland joined in 2019, has supported the introduction of the operating model of the Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service. The demand for the service was at a record level in 2020 due to COVID-19, and the crisis in Ukraine is expected to again increase entrepreneurs’ financial difficulties and demand for the service.

In the first months of 2022, the Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service has received as many as 1,000 contacts. The number of contacts and referrals to regional support services has also increased since last year due to the expansion of the activities of the Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service. “Due to the difficult situation in Europe and the sanctions on Russia, the service will be put to the test when Finnish companies are hit by the economic impact,” says Jaime Ruiz Rocamora, a specialist on the European Commission’s Structural Reform Support (DG REFORM), who has been working behind the project.

“Currently, the Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service receives a few calls a day related to the situation between Ukraine and Russia, but the number is expected to increase. The contacts have been related to, for example, costs that have risen as a result of the war, such as the availability of fuels, supplies, parts or raw materials and payment transactions,” says Jari Leskinen, Development Manager at TE Customer Service Centre.

The project behind the service was successfully completed, international cooperation will be continued

The Implementing Early Warning Tools in Finland project, supported by the European Commission, was successfully completed on 31 March 2022. The Europe-wide Early Warning system encourages entrepreneurs to seek help in a timely manner. The aim is to ensure that entrepreneurs facing financial distress have access to confidential and free assistance and support.

“The activities and cooperation network of the Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service will continue on a larger scale than ever, even as the project supported by the Commission has come to an end. Finland continues to be closely involved in the Early Warning Europe network,” says Tuija Groop, Ministerial Adviser at the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.

The activities are based on the revised EU Directive on restructuring and insolvency and the Directive on preventive restructuring frameworks and discharge of debt. The latter obligates the Member States to adopt measures to prevent entrepreneurs from facing insolvency.

What is Yrittäjän talousapu?

The Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service for entrepreneurs is a national service which provides assistance and counselling for small business owners and companies experiencing financial distress. The service consists of a national helpline and online service and supplementary regional services. Contacting us puts you in touch with our trained and experienced experts, and all of your discussions with them are confidential.

“The national Yritys-Suomi Talousapu telephone service, which had been operating since 2009, the pilot projects for regional support services in Pirkanmaa and Southwest Finland and the activities of Suomen Yrittäjät and Business Mentors Finland have all preceded the growth of the Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service into a national counselling network for entrepreneurs in financial distress. Regional Yrittäjän talousapu support services for entrepreneurs are now available from 17 different service providers around Finland, and more than 100 experts have been trained to support entrepreneurs in financial distress. We have achieved a great deal in the last few years. Our working group and cooperation partners have worked hard, and our cooperation will continue in the future,” concludes Development Manager Jari Leskinen.

The Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service is coordinated by the TE Customer Service Centre under the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment of Finland. The service is being developed as part of the EU-wide Early Warning Europe system.

Yrittäjän talousapu counselling service:

  • in Finnish Mon–Fri from 9 a.m. to 4.15 p.m., tel. 0295 024 880 (local network/mobile call charge)
  • in Swedish Thu from 9 a.m. to 4.15 p.m., tel. 0295 024 881 (local network/mobile call charge)
  • in English Mon–Fri from 9 a.m. to 4.15 p.m., tel. 0295 024 882 (local network/mobile call charge)
  • online at yrittajantalousapu.fi

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Contacts

Further information

Jari Leskinen
Development Manager
TE Customer Service Centre
tel. 040 593 3157
jari.s.leskinen@ely-keskus.fi

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