The first stamps of Aland were issued in 1984. The Åland Islands (population 28,000) form an archipelago in the Baltic Sea that is an autonomous, Swedish-language-speaking region of Finland. The Åland Islands are represented in the Finnish parliament, to which they elect one representative. Åland also has a different system of political parties from the mainland. Åland’s economy is heavily dominated by shipping, trade and tourism. Åland is the smallest of the three Nordic autonomous territories. One third of the population lives in the capital, Mariehamn. Åland is a member of the EU and the currency is the euro, but its relationship to the EU is regulated in a special protocol.
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