Last week Finland saw its credit rating downgraded from AAA to AA+. Following the downgrade, Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb made headlines when he blamed the country’s struggling economy almost solely on Apple. As this LA Times article points out, Apple’s recent success with the iPhone and iPad coincides perfectly with the downfall of two of Finland’s greatest exports: Nokia cell phones and Finnish paper products.
In the early 2000s, Nokia was a dominant force in the cell phone market. At its peak nearly one in every three cellphone owners had Nokia phones. Unfortunately, Nokia joined the smartphone revolution late and subsequently lost nearly all of its market share to Apple and Samsung. Nokia was eventually purchased by Microsoft.
Stubb went on to blame the paper industry’s recent struggles on the invention of the iPad. With the release of the iPad in 2010, Stubb said, the paper industry went into decline. Many would argue that the global recession was the real reason for this decline but the Prime Minister feels Apple is the true culprit.
Apple’s advancements in technology have played a factor in Finland’s recent struggles, but they’re just one external factor. Another reason for Finland’s struggles is Europe’s weak economy. There are also internal reasons for the recent decline, including Finland’s aging population. In any case, Apple is definitely making a huge impact on the world if they are able to get an entire country to blame its failures on them.