On Tuesday, 22 March 1994, Mr Matti Vuoria, Secretary General at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, acting on behalf of the Finnish Government, and Mr Jean-Marie Luton, ESA Director General, signed the Agreement for Finland's accession to the ESA Convention, thereby bringing the number of Member States to 14(*).
Under the Agreement, which will have to be ratified by its Parliament, Finland will become a full ESA Member State on 1 January 1995.
As an associate member of the Agency since 1 January 1987, Finland has increasingly contributed to its science and optional programmes. It is now planning to participate actively in ESA's space science, Earth observation and satellite communications programmes.
"Finland's accession to the ESA Convention is a clear sign of the importance and value of European cooperation on space and strengthens our position at a time when major space projects are becoming international programmes" said Mr Jean-Marie Luton after the signing ceremony.
(*) The thirteen other Member States are: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.