We in Nothern Ostrobothnia

What is Northern Ostrobothnia made of ?

Northern Ostrobothnia is a region of Finland with a lively, varied aspect expressed in a great diversity of landscapes. Its western part consists of the magnificent Ostrobothnian plains and includes the main towns on the coast of the Gulf of Bothnia.

The landscape then changes rapidly towards the east, as the gently undulating terrain gives way to impressive hills and finally the fjells of the north-eastern part of the region, with its major tourist centres, hiking trails, skiing tracks and slalom slopes.

The eastern boundary of Northern Ostrobothnia is at the same time part of the border between the European Union and Russia, and the region now occupies an established position as a gateway between east and west, thanks to its excellent transport connections and the cooperation that it has developed both with north-western Russia, Arkhangelsk and Karelia and with European centres of expertise.

Alongside the traditional sources of livelihood, the local people earn their living by designing and manufacturing a wealth of high quality products for distribution all over the world. This region of northern Europe is appreciated most of all for its expertise in advanced technology, the manufacture of steel, paper and pulp, biotechnology and high standards of education.

Its principal city, Oulu, serves as a second major centre in Finland and is ath same time an internationally renowned centre of technology.

The seasons of the year provide a fascinating cycle of extremes in living conditions. Where the northern part of the region is warmed by 24 hours of sunshine a day in midsummer, only a narrow glimmer on the horizon can be seen in midwinter.

But what is Northern Ostrobothnia really made of ?

Northern Ostrobothnia is made of wood and steel...

Wood processing and steel have always been the cornerstones of the region's economy. The people apply their innate perseverance and skills to the shaping of natural materials into the desired forms, whether it be fine art paper or precision steels.

The timber of the region is robust and has a dense grain, so that it is a much sought-after raw material both in Finland and abroad. The elementbuilt houses produced in the region are renowned for their harmonious architecture and high quality. And there is no lack of this raw material, as the growth rate of the forests in Northern Ostrobothnia exceeds the amount of timber processed. We are sure that you must have come across paper from Northern Ostrobothnia before in high-quality posters, brochures and books.

Steel produced in Northern Ostrobothnia is used throughout the world, mostly in products which require uncompromising quality and durability. Your car or bicycle may well contain parts of that steel.

Many people in Northern Ostrobothnia still make their living from agriculture, and the food processing industry can be said to have long traditions in the region. One excample of this is the local Emmenthaler cheese, which has twice been awarded prizes as the best of its kind in the world.

The coast brings in incomes through both fishing and shipping. People from the region have travelled the world's seas for centuries, and the ports of Oulu, Raahe and Kalajoki on the Bothnian Bay are still used for transporting steel, paper, timber and machinery to practically all parts of the world throughout the year.

... Creativity and quality ...

You must at some time have received a call from a Nokia cellular phonen. The development work for these takes place in the Oulu region, which has become one of the world's most prominent arenas for progress in advanced technology.

The success of our hi-tech companies is derived from the persistence and perseverance of their staff and from the emergence of Oulu, and of Northern Ostrobothnia as a whole, as one of the most modern centres of education and training in Finland. This means that large numbers of innovative, hard-working, internationally-oriented young people are graduating from the University of Oulu and other schools and colleges in the region each year to develop new products with good prospects for future success.

Oulu Technopolis is known internationally as an ideal example of a well-designed and implemented centre of expertise. There are now more than a hundred successful export companies to testify to a success of this concept.

The Medipolis Center is the most recent manifestation of cooperation between the sciences and business life in Oulu. It is intended to convert the latest results of medical and biochemical research into commercial products. This is done throught direct links with Oulu University Hospital, a form of cooperation that has already produced significant results in international terms.

Biotechnology, and particularly the ecological use of renewable natural resources in industry and energy production, has already been studied and implemented in the region for a long time. New biotechnological and process engineering companies are constantly developing modern, environmentally friendly products for the global market.

... words and feelings ...

The people of Northern Ostrobothnia love to read, experience things and express their feelings, absorbing strength from their own culture. This means that they are prepared to travel a long way just for an evening at the theatre. It means that they respect their libraries and are prepared to develop them, even to the extent of modern telecommunications services. It means that Oulu has the world's northernmost professional symphony orchestra. It means that art in the north has a distinctive, powerful character of its own.

Music festivals, arctic weeks, theatre festivals, fish markets and traditional celebrations are the ways in which the people of Northern Ostrobothnia come into contact with new ideas and delving into the world of the past.They appreciate their own roots and at the same time are bold enough to experiment with everything that is new.

Culture and technology also coincide in products which are used for interior decoration, dressing and expressing one's personality. Designers and engineers work together to create products of an ever higher quality and easier to use. The concept of modern design is present in Northern Ostrobothnia in its industries, its private homes and its street scenes.

Northern Ostrobothnia are made of all of those and many more !