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The status of regional programmes is based on the Finnish Regional Development Act (7/2014, 6 §). Pursuant to the act, regional plans, regional land use plans, regional programmes and the implementation plan of the regional programme are the tools of regional development in Finland. The regional land use plan´s role is to set out the principles of land use and community structure, to designate areas reserved as necessary for regional development and to steer the more detailed planning done by the local authorities. A separate implementation plan (often referred to as TOPSU in Finnish) of the regional programme targets funds for development projects on annual level and prioritises the measures planned to promote the region’s interests on a short term.
Regionally the above-mentioned documents and the promotion of the region’s interests as agreed between the local actors are concrete tools for development activities.
The vision for the Kainuu region until 2035 is to be a competitive and living region. The strengths standing out in the regional profile of Kainuu are nature, space and natural resources as well as the infrastructure. These qualities create an excellent framework for self-regulatory, bottom-up development activities that originate from the needs of the region – especially for developing bio economy.
The most critical challenges for the Kainuu region to meet are population decline due to emigration, availability of skilled labour, matching the supply and demand of labour, accessibility of the region, the welfare of the citizens of Kainuu and the image of the region.
The Kainuu programme aims at meeting the challenges by 1) applying a policy of employment that will reform and reinforce the vitality of the region; 2) creating and maintaining a functional regional structure, a network of easy cooperation and a functioning service system that will increase 3) the welfare of the citizens.
This will promote the positive image of Kainuu as a region of creativity, courage, positivity and entrepreneurship, and result in increase of population. Know-how, sustainable development, equality, culture, the Kainutlaatuinen brand (twisting the Finnish word ainutlaatuinen, unique) and digitalization are important points of view in developing the region. The countryside and the third sector will also be taken into account especially in regard with equality.