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Finland is a Nordic country situated north of the Baltic States, bordering Russia, Sweden, and Norway, with excellent transportation links to the Nordic-Baltic region. Finland is a member of the European Union and part of the Euro area. As a modern, stable economy, it offers a world-class investment climate and well-developed digital infrastructure with stability, functionality, and a high standard of living.

Finland joined NATO in April 2023. The alliance membership should bring economic benefits to Finland by increasing regional security and stability. Investments in the defense industry will create jobs and stimulate economic growth. The United States has become Finland’s largest trading partner, outpacing Sweden as the traditional number one.

Finland was ranked 8th in the IMD World Competitiveness Ranking in 2022. The country has a highly skilled, educated, and multilingual labor force with solid expertise in Information Communications Technology (ICT) and emerging technologies, including microelectronics, quantum and supercomputing, shipbuilding, forestry, and renewable energy.

Major challenges for foreign investors include high tax rates, a rigid labor market, cumbersome bureaucracy, and the lengthy and unwieldy process of opening bank accounts. An aging population and a shrinking workforce are the most pressing demographic concerns for economic growth. According to Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Barometer 2023, over three-quarters of businesses report experiencing a talent shortage while large foreign-owned companies are affected. U.S. companies currently employ 21,412 people in Finland, an increase of around 3% over last year.

To attract investment, the Government of Finland (GOF) cut the corporate tax rate in 2014 to 20 percent (the lowest rate in the Nordics) and simplified its residency permit procedures. Inward FDI to Finland grew by €2.5 billion during 2021 and was €76.2 billion at the end of the year. The United States is the second-largest foreign direct investment (FDI) source in Finland, after Sweden.

Finland was ranked first in the UN’s Sustainable Development Report, which compares 193 UN member states based on 17 sustainability goals. The country has set ambitious goals to reach carbon neutrality by 2035, increasing the interest of companies with equally high sustainability goals looking for opportunities to invest.

Olkiluoto 3 (OL3) nuclear reactor began regular electricity output in April 2023, accelerating the move towards a carbon-neutral society. Production has reduced electricity imports by about 60 %. A new liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal was established in Finland, allowing future imports of non-Russia sourced natural gas.

Gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to contract by 0.2 percent, but the economy will return to growth at the end of 2023. Energy consumer prices started to rise in the aftermath of the covid-19 pandemic and continued during 2022 due to the energy crisis prompted by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The Foreign Commercial Service and Political/Economic Section at the U.S. Embassy in Finland are valuable resources for American businesses wishing to engage the Finnish market. Business Finland is the government organization operating as a one-stop-shop for foreign investors and facilitating innovation funding, foreign direct investment, and trade promotion.

Table 1: Key Metrics and Rankings
Measure Year Index/Rank Website Adress
TI Corruption Perceptions Index 2022 2 of 180
Global Innovation Index 2022 9 of 132
U.S. FDI in partner country ($M USD, historical stock positions) 2021 USD 6.5 billion
World Bank GNI per capita 2021 USD 46,218

The Finnish government is open to foreign investment. A mixture of domestic and EU competition rules governs mergers and acquisitions. Finnish tax authorities treat the transfer of shares from a Finnish company to a foreign non-EU company as a taxable event.

Finland does not grant foreign-owned firms’ preferential treatment such as tax holidays or other subsidies. Instead, Finland relies on policies that offer domestic and international firms a favorable business environment, an educated workforce, and a well-functioning infrastructure.

Companies benefit from beneficial trade arrangements through Finland’s membership in the EU and the World Trade Organization (WTO), in addition to the protection offered by Finland’s bilateral investment treaties with sixty-three countries. Finland’s corporate income tax rate, 20 percent, is the lowest in the Nordics and one of the lowest in the EU.

Limits on Foreign Control and Right to Private Ownership and Establishment

As an EU member state, Finland is committed to EU rules on the free movement of goods, capital, persons, and certain services. Private ownership and the participation of foreign companies or individuals are generally unrestricted.

The Act on Monitoring Foreign Corporate Acquisitions (172/2012) governs foreign investments in Finland. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment (TEM) monitors and confirms foreign corporate acquisitions and decides whether an acquisition conflicts with “vital national interests,” including securing national defense and safeguarding public order and security. If TEM finds a critical national interest jeopardized, it must refer the matter to the Council of State, which may refuse to approve the acquisition. 

For defense acquisitions, monitoring applies to all foreign owners, who must apply for prior approval. “Defense” includes all entities that supply or have supplied goods or services to the Finnish Ministry of Defense, the Finnish Defense Forces, and the Finnish Border Guard, as well as entities dealing in dual-use goods. The substantive elements in evaluating the application are identical to those applied to other corporate acquisitions.

In the non-military sector, Finnish companies considered critical for securing vital functions of society are subject to screening, which applies to foreign owners residing or domiciled outside the EU or EFTA. There are no formal requirements for the application formatting and notification submitted to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment. However, the Ministry provides drawn-up instructions for preparing the application/notification. The application and statement must also be accompanied by a form containing specific information required by the EU Regulation.

Finland requires non-EU/ETA foreign individuals or entities to receive Defense Ministry permission before they purchase real estate. Companies registered in Finland but whose decision-making bodies are at least one-tenth non-EU/ETA origin will have to seek a permit. More info here: 

The Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council on establishing a framework for the national security screening of high-risk foreign investments into the Union entered into force in 2019. Currently, 25 out of 27 EU Member States, including Finland, either had a national FDI screening mechanism in place; adopted a new national FDI screening mechanism; amended an existing instrument; or initiated a consultative or legislative process expected to result in the adoption of a new tool or amendments to an existing one.

In 2022, the Commission published guidance for EU Member States on assessing and preventing threats to EU security and public order from Russian and Belarusian investments. The guidance highlights the increased risk from investments subject to Russian or Belarusian government influence in the context of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and calls for close cooperation between authorities involved in investment screening and those responsible for enforcing sanctions.

Other Investment Policy Reviews

In 2019, the OECD launched the Impact of Regulation on International Investment in Finland report to analyze FDI flows towards Finland and other Nordic-Baltic countries and discusses the benefits of foreign investment for the Finnish economy.

Finland has few explicit restrictions on FDI and relatively low barriers to trade and investment in some sectors, which contribute to attracting inward FDI. Finland maintains few barriers in professional services sectors and has a favorable regulatory environment for digitally enabled services. Investors in Nordic-Baltic countries enjoy a high level of regulatory integration within the region, and regulatory harmonization within the Single Market has lowered barriers for investors within the EEA.

The report finds that Finland’s comparative advantage in knowledge-based services is reflected in the high degree of foreign penetration in these sectors. Finnish salaries for high-skilled workers are considered relatively competitive compared to other Nordics. High-quality institutions, transparent regulation, and economic and political stability also contribute to a strong business climate.

OECD noted that there are, however, several challenges that may be preventing Finland from exploiting its full potential as a destination for FDI. Setting up a business takes longer in Finland than in other countries in the region, and foreign investors have limited access to online company registration. Long processing times of operational permits slow down, or undermine, investment projects. Stringent labor market regulation and excessive bureaucracy to recruit non-EEA workers impede companies’ growth and internationalization prospects, which is worrisome given growing skill shortages and rapidly aging population. For more information: 

Finland has been a member of the WTO and the EU since 1995. The WTO conducted its Trade Policy Review of the European Union (including Finland) in May 2017: 

Finland, in the past three years, has not undergone an investment policy review by the World Trade Organization (WTO) or the United Nations Committee on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

Business Facilitation

All businesses in Finland must be publicly registered at the Finnish Trade Register. The website is: . The Business Information System BIS (“YTJ” in Finnish, ) is an online service enabling investors to start a business or organization, report changes, close down a business, or conduct searches.

The new Trade Register Act entered into force in June 2023. Still, parts of the Act will not take effect until 2026. All companies (except for associations, foundations, and private traders) must submit start-up notifications, notifications of changes, notifications of termination of business, financial statements, and other information to the Trade Register. Private traders are no longer required to register with the Trade Register but can choose to do so if they wish. The Trade Register is needed when using a company name for business activities, registering financial statements under the Accounting Act, or a private trader permanently residing outside the European Economic Area. The new Trade Register Act changes will not affect the obligation for private traders to register with the Tax Administration. For more information: 

Permits, licenses, and notifications required depend on whether the foreign entrepreneur originates from a Nordic country, other parts of the European Union, or elsewhere. The type of company also affects the permits required, which can include the registration of the right to residency, residence permits for an employee or self-employed person, and registration in the Finnish Population Information System. A foreigner may need a permit from the Finnish Patent and Registration Office to serve as a partner in a partnership or administrative body of a company. For more information: .

Improvements made in 2016 to the residence permit system for foreign specialists, defined as those with a specific field of expertise, a university degree, and who earn at least EUR 3,000 gross per month, should help attract experts to Finland. An online permit application  available since November 2016 has made it easier for family members to acquire a residence permit.

In 2022, Finland introduced a long-term D visa to increase the immigration of skilled labor significantly. With a D visa, applicants can enter Finland immediately after receiving a favorable decision on the residence permit application, and the D visa sticker has been attached to the passport. D visas can be issued to students, researchers, persons in managerial positions in companies, and family members of the individuals mentioned above. For more information: 

Entrepreneurs must take out pension insurance for their employees, and certain fields obligate additional insurance. All businesses have a statutory obligation to maintain financial accounts, and, except for small companies, businesses must appoint an external auditor.

Finland ranked 20th according to the World Bank Group’s 2020 Doing Business Index; it ranked 31st on “Starting a Business” (  . According to a 2016 study (FDI Attractiveness Scoreboard) by the European Commission, Finland is the most attractive EU country for FDI in terms of the political, regulatory, and legal environment.

Outward Investment

International trade and external economic relations are a central part of Finland’s foreign and security policy. The Ministry for Foreign Affairs prepares and implements Finland’s trade policy within the European Union. 

Team Finland is a network of public sector bodies dedicated to helping Finnish companies grow and be successful abroad. It also promotes the country’s image and attracts foreign investments and experts to Finland. The network offers tailor-made service packages for companies’ internationalization needs based on the services provided by the network actors. Service packages typically combine services provided at least by the Center for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment, Business Finland, Finnvera, and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. 

Business Finland is a public-sector operator and part of the Team Finland network. It helps Finnish SMEs go international, encourages foreign direct investments in Finland, and promotes tourism. The organization focuses on agricultural technology, clean technology, connectivity, e-commerce, education, ICT and digitalization, mining, and mobility as a service. While many of Business Finland’s programs are export-oriented, they also seek to offer business and network opportunities. The organization employs 760 specialists at 40 foreign locations and 16 offices in Finland. / 

The government generally allows domestic investors to invest abroad, with some exceptions. The Defense Ministry is responsible for approving arms exports for military use, the National Police Board grants permission to export civilian weapons, and the Foreign Ministry oversees exports of dual-use products. Export control seeks to promote the responsible export of Finnish technology and to prevent the use for the development of WMDs, for undesirable military ends, against the interests of Finland, or for purposes that violate human rights.

Finland does not share a bilateral investment treaty (BIT) agreement or FTA with the United States. A full list of Finland investment agreements, is at 
As an EU member state, Finland is also a signatory to any treaty or agreement, including free trade agreements, signed by the European Union. Finland is a signatory to the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), which entered into force on February 22, 2017.

Finland and the United States signed a convention for the avoidance of double taxation and the prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income and on capital (TIAS 12101) that entered into force in 1990. In 2014, the two countries signed an intergovernmental agreement to implement the U.S. Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) which fights tax evasion and fraud. The Finnish tax administration guidance regarding FATCA is at:
and  (available only in Finnish and Swedish).

For the full text of the FATCA agreement, see:

Finland is a member of the OECD Inclusive Framework on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting and a party to the two-pillar plan to address the tax challenges arising from the digitalization of the economy. For a list of Finland’s bilateral tax agreements, see: 

The salary and fringe benefits paid to qualifying foreign key employees living in Finland for more than six months, and who are guaranteed the status of resident taxpayer, are taxed at a flat rate of 32 percent as of February 7, 2022. For detailed tax guidance, see the Finnish Tax Administration’s website:  and the Tax Survival kit by the Finnish Tax Administration (February 2021) .

In April 2018, Business Finland introduced a Startup permit to recruit more international talent and innovative companies to the fast-growing Finnish startup ecosystem. Business Finland must first provide a favorable assessment of a proposed application before the Startup permit application is sent to the Finnish Immigration Service. Business Finland evaluates whether the business model, team, and resources show potential for rapid international growth. After the assessment, the applicant will receive an Eligibility Statement to be attached to the Startup permit application. The permit can initially be issued for a maximum of two years, after which it can be renewed. The permit does not involve investments from the Finnish government or financial support.

For more information see:  and  and .

Transparency of the Regulatory System

The Finnish Competition Act and EU competition rules prohibit competition restraints that harm sound and effective economic competition (prohibition principle). Such restricted conditions include the abuse of dominant position and mutual agreements and practices between competing undertakings to limit competition (cartels).

The substantive provisions of the Competition Act correspond to those included in Articles 101 and 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). Unlike EU legislation, the Competition Act also includes provisions on competition neutrality and a provision on dominant position in the grocery trade market. The EU competition rules are applied when an arrangement affects the trade between EU Member States. The Competition Act applies when no such effect on trade exists.

Under the Competition Act, the authorities can intervene in activities restricting competition in Finland or affecting Finnish customers. The Competition Act enables the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) to prioritize its tasks and focus its resources on the most significant competition issues. More information on competition legislation: 

The Securities Market Act (SMA) contains regulations on corporate disclosure procedures and requirements, responsibility for flagging share ownership, insider regulations and offenses, the issuing and marketing of securities, and trading. The clearing of securities trades is subject to licensing and is supervised by the Financial Supervision Authority. The SMA is at

See the Financial Supervisory Authority’s overview of regulations for listed companies here: 

Finland is currently not a member of the UNCTAD Business Facilitation Program 

The Act on the Openness of Public Documents establishes the openness of all records in the possession of officials of the state, municipalities, registered religious communities, and corporations that perform legally mandated public duties, such as pension funds and public utilities. Exceptions can only be made by law or by an executive order for reasons such as national security.

For more information, see the Ministry of Justice’s page on Openness: 

The Act on the Openness of Government Activities can be found here: 

In September 2021, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment released a Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Finance Roadmap – Finnish Roadmap for Financing a Decade of SDG Action 2021- report, where environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) is promoted, as records show increasingly a positive relation between good ESG practices and investment returns and volatility. More information here: 

Currently, Finnish law does not require institutional investors and financial intermediaries to consider ESG factors when making investment decisions. Most institutional investors and financial intermediaries have signed the UN Principles for Responsible Investment and are also considering sustainable development goals in their investment decisions. However, the Finnish Corporate Governance Code considers certain ESG factors in its recommendations, such as the composition of the company’s board of directors concerning gender. The Corporate Governance Code applies to all companies listed on Nasdaq Helsinki. 

Finland ranks third on the World Justice Project (WJP) Rule of Law Index (2022) regarding constraints on government powers, absence of corruption, open government, fundamental rights, order and security, regulatory enforcement, civil justice, and criminal justice. For more, see: 

Finland ranks fourth on World Bank’s Global Indicators of Regulatory Governance: 

Availability of official information in Finland is the best in the EU, according to a report by the Center for Data Information (2017). The newly established Digital and Population Data Services Agency (2020) is responsible for developing and maintaining the national open data portal 

In 2019, Finland passed the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) directive, which imparts rules conditions for the secondary use of private-sector health and social data. A single data permit authority (Findata) was established to oversee the entire data-sharing process: 

Finland joined the Open Government Partnership Initiative (OGP) in April 2013. The global OGP initiative aims at promoting more transparent, effective, and accountable public administration. The goal is to develop dialogue between citizens and administration and to enhance citizen engagement. The OGP aims at concrete commitments from participating countries to promote transparency, to fight corruption, to increase citizen participation, and to adopt the use of new technologies. Finland’s 4th national Open Government Action Plan for 2019–2023 was published in September 2019.

The current Government Program (issued in December 2019) sets openness of public information, including open data, application programming interface APIs, and open-source software as key goals of the administration.
The status of Finland’s public finances is available at Statistics Finland, Finland’s official statistics agency: 

The status of Finland’s national debt is available at the State Treasury: 

International Regulatory Considerations

Finland respects EU common rules and expects other Member States to do the same. The government seeks to constructively combine national and joint European interests in Finland’s EU policy and seeks better and lighter regulation that incorporates flexibility for SMEs. The government will not increase burdens detrimental to competitiveness during its national implementation of EU acts.

Finland follows European Union (EU) internal market practices, which define Finland’s trade relations both inside the EU and with non-EU countries. Restrictions apply to certain items such as products containing alcohol, pharmaceuticals, narcotics and dangerous drugs, explosives, etc. The import of beef cattle bred on hormones is forbidden. Other restrictions apply to farm products under the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

As a member of the WTO, Finland reports under the Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT Agreement) all proposed technical regulations that could affect trade with other Member countries. In 2021, Finland submitted two notifications of technical regulations and conformity assessment procedures to the WTO. It has submitted 105 notifications since 1995. Finland is a signatory to the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA), which entered into force on February 22, 2017.

In March 1997, EU commitments required the establishment of a tax border between the autonomously governed, but territorially Finnish, Åland Islands and the rest of Finland. As a result, the trade of goods and services between the Åland Islands and the rest of Finland is treated as if it were trade with a non-EU area.

The Åland Islands belong to the customs territory of the EU but not to the EU fiscal territory. The tax border separates the Åland Islands from the VAT and excise territory of the EU. VAT and excise are levied on goods imported across the tax border, but no customs duty is levied. In tax border trade, goods can be sold with a tax-free invoice in accordance with the detailed taxation instructions of the Finnish Tax Administration.

Legal System and Judicial Independence

Finland has a civil law system. European Community (EC) law is directly applicable in Finland and takes precedence over national legislation. The Market Court is a special court for rulings in commercial law, competition, and public procurement cases, and may issue injunctions and penalties against the illegal restriction of competition. It also governs mergers and acquisitions and may overturn public procurement decisions and require compensatory payments. The court has jurisdiction over disputes regarding whether goods or services have been marketed unfairly. The court also hears industrial and civil IPR cases.

Amendments to the Finnish Competition Act (948/2011) entered into force on June 17, 2019, and on January 1, 2020. The amendments included most notably changes to the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority FCCA’s dawn raid practices, information exchange practices between national authorities, and the calculation of merger control deadlines, which are now calculated in working days, rather than calendar days. On June 24, 2021, the Finnish Competition Act was amended to implement the EU ECN+ Directive, helping competition authorities to be more effective enforcers and to ensure proper functioning of the internal market. More information here: 

Finland is a party of the New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards since 1962. The provisions of the convention have been included in the Arbitration Act (957/1992).

The website  contains information about the Finnish judicial system and links to the websites of the independent courts, the public legal aid and guardianship districts, the National Prosecution Authority, the National Enforcement Authority Finland, and the Criminal Sanctions Agency.

Laws and Regulations on Foreign Direct Investment

The purpose of the Act on the Monitoring of Foreign Corporate Acquisitions in Finland (172/2012) (hereafter the Act) is to monitor and, if vital national interests so require, to restrict the transfer of influence to foreigners and foreign organizations and foundations. 

A positive attitude to foreign investments is the guiding principle of the act. However, the authorities can exercise control over the ownership of companies considered essential in terms of the security of supply and national security and, if necessary, restrict foreign ownership in such companies. In practice, critical national interests mainly refer to military, national defense, functions vital to society (including safeguarding critical infrastructure and security of supply), national security, and public order.

Under the act, corporate acquisition refers to activities as a result of which: a foreign owner gains control of at least one-tenth, at least one-third, or at least one-half of the aggregate number of votes conferred by all shares in the company or a holding that otherwise corresponds to decision-making authority in a limited liability company or other monitored entity. For more information: 

There is no primary or “one-stop-shop” website that provides all relevant laws, rules, procedures and reporting requirements for investors. A non-European Economic Area (EEA) resident (persons or companies) operating in Finland must obtain a license or a notification when starting a business in a regulated industry. A comprehensive list of regulated industries can be found at: 

See also the Ministry of Employment and the Economy’s Regulated Trade guidelines: 

The autonomously governed Åland Islands, however, are an exception. Right of domicile is acquired at birth if it is possessed by either parent. Property ownership and the right to conduct business are limited to those with the right of domicile in the Åland Islands. The Åland Government can occasionally grant exemptions from the requirement of right of domicile for those wishing to acquire real property or conduct a business in Åland. This does not prevent people from settling in, or trading with, the Åland Islands. Provided they are Finnish citizens, immigrants who have lived in Åland for five years and have adequate Swedish may apply for domicile and the Åland Government can grant exemptions.

EnterpriseFinland/  is a free online service offering information and services for starting, growing, and developing a company. Users may also ask for advice through the My Enterprise Finland website: Finnish legislation is available in the free online databank Finlex in Finnish, where some English translations can also be found: 

Competition and Antitrust Laws

The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) protects competition by intervening in cases regarding restrictive practices, such as cartels and abuse of dominant position, and violations of the Competition Act and the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). Investigations occur both on the FCCA’s initiative and based on complaints. Where necessary, the FCCA makes proposals to the Market Court regarding penalties.

The FCCA requires notification on mergers and acquisitions that exceed certain turnover thresholds. The FCCA will intervene in the transaction if it deems it to prevent effective competition in Finland. The FCCA would investigate transactions where the parties’ combined turnover generated in Finland exceeds EUR 100 million and the total turnover generated in Finland of at least two parties exceeds EUR 10 million per party.

In international competition matters, the FCCA’s key stakeholders are the European Commission (DG Competition), the OECD Competition Committee, the Nordic competition authorities, and the International Competition Network (ICN). FCCA rulings and decisions can be found in the archive in Finnish. More information at: 

In September 2020, the Nordic Competition Authorities released a joint memorandum on digital platforms, setting out the Nordic perspective on issues of competition in digital markets in Europe. For more see: 

Expropriation and Compensation

Finnish law protects private property rights. Citizen property is protected by the constitution, which includes basic provisions in the event of expropriation. Private property is only expropriated for public purposes (eminent domain), in a non-discriminatory manner, with reasonable compensation, and in accordance with established international law.

Expropriation is usually based on a permit given by the government or on a confirmed plan and is performed by the District Survey Office. An expropriation permit granted by the government may be appealed to the Supreme Administrative Court. Compensation is awarded at full market price but may exclude the rise in value due only to planning decisions.

Besides normal expropriation according to the Expropriation Act, a municipality or the state has the right to expropriate land for planning purposes. Expropriation is mainly for acquiring land for common needs, such as street areas, parks, and civic buildings. The method is rarely used: less than one percent of land acquired by the municipalities is expropriated. Credendo Group ranks Finland’s expropriation risk as low (1), on a scale from 1 to 7: 

Dispute Settlement

ICSID Convention and New York Convention

In 1969, Finland became a member state to the World Bank-based International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID; Washington Convention). Finland is a signatory to the Convention of the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (1958 New York Convention).

Investor-State Dispute Settlement

The Finnish Arbitration Act (967/1992) applies without distinction to domestic and international arbitration. Sections 1 to 50 apply to arbitration in Finland, and Sections 51 to 55 to arbitration agreements providing for arbitration abroad and the recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards in Finland. Of 229 parties in 2021, the majority (208) were from Finland.

In 2021, a Chinese investor brought the first known investment treaty claim against Finland. He was detained and had his business center raided and shut down on suspicion it was facilitating illegal immigration. The outcome of the proceedings is pending. For more information: 

International Commercial Arbitration and Foreign Courts

Finland has a long tradition of institutional arbitration and its legal framework dates back to 1928. Today, arbitration procedures are governed by the 1992 Arbitration Act (as amended), which largely mirrors the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration of 1985 (with amendments, as adopted in 2006). The UNCITRAL Model law has not yet, however, been incorporated into Finnish law.

Finland’s Act on Mediation in Civil Disputes and Certification of Settlements by Courts (394/2011) aims to facilitate alternative dispute resolution (ADR) and promote amicable settlements by encouraging mediation, and applies to settlements concluded in other EU member states:

In June 2016, the Finland Arbitration Institute of the Chamber of Commerce (FAI) launched its Mediation Rules under which FAI will administer mediations: 

Any dispute in a civil or commercial matter, international or domestic, which can be settled by agreement may be referred to arbitration. Arbitration is frequently used to settle commercial disputes and is usually faster than court proceedings. An arbitration award is final and binding. FAI promotes the settlement of disputes through arbitration, commonly using the “FAI Arbitration/Expedited Arbitration Rules”, which were updated in 2020: 

The Finland Arbitration Institute (FAI) appoints arbitrators both to domestic and international arbitration proceedings and administers domestic and international arbitrations governed by its rules. It also appoints arbitrators in ad hoc cases when the arbitration agreement so provides and acts as appointing authority under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules. The Finnish Arbitration Act (967/1992) states that foreign nationals can act as arbitrators.

For more information see: 

Finland signed the UN Convention on Transparency in Treaty-based Investor-State Arbitration (“Mauritius Convention”) in March 2015. Under these rules, all documents and hearings are open to the public, interested parties may submit statements, and protection for confidential information has been strengthened.

Bankruptcy Regulations

The Finnish Bankruptcy Act was amended, and the amendments took effect on July 1, 2019. The main objectives of these amendments were to simplify, digitize, and speed-up bankruptcy proceedings. The amended Bankruptcy Act allows administrators to send notices and invitations to creditor addresses registered in the Trade Register. This will improve accessibility for foreign companies that have established a branch in Finland. Administrators of bankruptcy and restructuring proceedings must upload data and documentation to the bankruptcy and restructuring proceedings case management system (KOSTI). KOSTI is available only in Finnish for creditors located in Finland due to the strong ID requirements.

The Reorganization of Enterprises Act (1993/47)  establishes a legal framework for reorganization with the aim to provide an alternative to bankruptcy proceedings. The act excludes credit and insurance institutions and certain other financial institutions. Recognition of restructuring or insolvency processes initiated outside of the EU requires an exequatur from a Finnish court.

The bankruptcy ombudsman,  supervises the administration of bankruptcy estates in Finland. The Act on the Supervision of the Administration of Bankruptcy Estates dictates related Finnish law:

Finland can be considered creditor-friendly; enforcement of liabilities through bankruptcy proceedings as well as execution outside bankruptcy proceedings are both effective. Bankruptcy proceedings are creditor-driven, with no formal powers granted to the debtor and its shareholders. The rights of a secured creditor are also quite extensive.

According to data collected by the World Bank’s 2020 Doing Business Report, resolving insolvency takes 11 months on average and costs 3.5 percent of the debtor’s estate. The average recovery rate is 88 cents on the dollar. Globally, Finland ranked first of 190 countries on the ease of resolving insolvency in the Doing Business 2020 report :

Investment Incentives

Foreign-owned companies in Finland are eligible for government and EU incentives on an equal footing with Finnish-owned companies. Support is given in the form of grants, loans, tax benefits, equity participation, guarantees, and employee training.

Assistance is administered through one of Finland’s Centers for Economic Development, Transport, and the Environment (ELY) that provide advisory, training, and expert services as well as grant funding for investment and development projects. Investment aid can be granted to companies in the regional development areas, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Large companies may also qualify if they have a major employment impact in the region.

Aid to business development can be granted to improve or facilitate the company’s establishment and operation, know-how, internationalization, product development, or process enhancement. Subsidies for start-up companies are available for establishing and expanding business operations during the first 24 months. Transport aid may be granted for deliveries of goods produced to sparsely populated areas. Energy subsidies can be granted to companies for investments in energy efficiency and conservation. EU finance is largely also channeled through the ELY Centers.;jsessionid=0B09A1B237B74FAC485AAD7C8E068DBF 

Business Finland helps foreign investors set up a business in Finland. Its services are free of charge and range from data collection and matchmaking to location management. Business Finland’s innovation funding provides low-interest loans and grants to challenging and innovative projects potentially leading to global success stories. The organization offers funding for research and development work carried out by companies, research organizations, and public sector service providers in Finland: 

Startups and both SMEs and large companies can benefit from Business Finland incentives: More on Business Finland’s incentives: 
and incentives fact sheet:

A company can use guarantees from the state-owned financing company Finnvera, which offers services to businesses in most sectors and is also Finland’s official Export Credit Agency (ECA): 

Support for innovative business ventures can also be obtained from the Foundation for Finnish Inventions: 

As part of the Sustainable Growth Program (the recovery and resilience plan), Finland is promoting energy investment and energy infrastructure projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Finland and support Finland’s 2035 carbon neutrality target. The 520 million EUR funding promotes climate objectives and new business opportunities in sustainable growth for companies. For more see: 

Finland’s feed-in premium scheme for renewable electricity production (wind power, biogas, forest chips, and other wood fuels) entered into force in 2011 (Act No. 1396/2010). Wind power, biogas power and wood-based fuel power stations accepted in the feed-in system were paid a subsidy meeting the difference between the target price and the electricity’s market price for a 12-year period. Support for wind power was closed the end of 2017, for biogas and wood-based fuel power plants at the end of 2018, and for wood chip power plants in mid-March 2021.

Finnish tax legislation provides certain tax incentives for using renewable energy sources (for example, simplified excise taxation and possibility to apply for a tax refund). For more see: 

Government aid is available for the implementation of energy audits, investments that conserve energy, and investments related to the use of renewable energy as well as for European Skills, Competences, Qualifications and Occupations (ESCO) projects. For more see: 

In Finland, the level of energy taxation is higher than the minimum tax levels set by the EU. According to Finnish Energy, a lobby organization for the energy sector, companies operating in Finland are disadvantaged in international competition due to Finland’s high energy taxation. Electricity tax on industry is lower than that on consumers and other businesses, but it is still high on the international scale.

In Finland, the current national policy is to tax energy production based on the carbon intensity of the fuel used, leaving renewable energy sources outside this tax. These carbon-based tax incentives for renewable energy production promote technologies with higher maturity and lower subsidy needs.

Foreign Trade Zones/Free Ports/Trade Facilitation

Free trade zone area regulations have been harmonized in the EU by the Community Customs Code. The European Union Customs Code UCC, its Delegated Act and Implementing Act entered into force on May 1, 2016, and will be implemented gradually; the free zone of control type II was abolished, and the operator authorizations were changed into customs warehouse authorizations on Customs’ initiative. In Finland, uncleared goods can be stored in temporary warehouses or customs warehouses. There are no free zones or special economic zones in Finland.

The code also allows the processing of non-EU goods without import duties and other charges. For more see: 

Performance and Data Localization Requirements

There are no performance requirements or commitments imposed on foreign investment in Finland. However, to conduct business in Finland, some residency requirements must be met. The Limited Liability Companies (LLC) Act of Finland is at: 

A LLC must be reported for registration within three months from the signing of the memorandum of association:  There is no forced localization policy for foreign investments in Finland.

The legal basis for the limitation on admission of third country nationals for the purpose of employment is set out in the Council Resolution C274/3 of 1994. Labor Market Tests (LMT) are mechanisms that aim to ensure that migrant workers are only admitted after employers have seriously and unsuccessfully searched for local workers. As a tool to manage labor migration and to facilitate entry of certain categories of third-country national workers, Finland applies various exemptions from the LMT for certain categories of worker, according to national labor market needs.

These categories include highly qualified workers or top specialists, intra-corporate transferees (ICTs), posted workers, persons holding high ranking positions, sports professionals, and workers in the fields of research, science, art, and culture. LMT for persons already working in Finland and transferring to other sectors was removed in June 2019 in order to improve the labor mobility of foreign citizens already in the labor market. More information: 

To improve availability of workforce in sectors with labor shortage, a regional LMT pilot was launched in September 2021 through February 2023. Common guidelines on work permits in selected areas are introduced to increase labor mobility between regions and ease permit processes. The ministry’s websites for ongoing projects: 

Finland participates actively in the development of the EU’s Digital Single Market (DSM) and, aside from privacy issues, encourages a light regulatory approach in this area. Since May 2018, data transfers from Finland to non-EU countries must abide by the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (EU) 2016/679. Finland supports the EU Commission’s view on promoting European digitalization and creating a single market for data.

In February 2021, an Advisory Board for Network Security (NSAB) was established to assess and develop the security of domestic communications networks and to support decision-making by the authorities. The board’s operation is based on the new provisions of the Act on Electronic Communications Services that entered into force in early 2021 and is part of the implementation of the EU guidelines and 5G security toolbox in Finland.

Personal data may be transferred across borders per the Finnish Personal Data Act (PDA) at: , which states that personal data may be transferred outside the European Union or the European Economic Area only if the country in question guarantees an adequate level of data protection. Office of the Data Protection Ombudsman legislation is at: 

In November 2020, the Office of the Data Protection Ombudsman and the Finnish Information Society Development Center (TIEKE) started a pilot program providing micro enterprises and SMEs with information and tools to help ensure effective data protection. More information can be found here: 

Real Property

The Finnish legal system protects and enforces property rights and secured interests in property, both movable and real. Finland ranked first in the world of 129 countries in the Property Rights Alliance 2022 International Property Rights Index (IPRI), which concentrates on a country’s legal and political environment, physical property rights, and intellectual property rights (IPR).

Mortgages exist in Finland and can be applied to both owned and rented real estate. Finland ranks 34 out of 190 countries in the ease of Registering Property according to the World Bank’s 2020 Doing Business Report. In Finland, real property formation, development, land consolidation, cadastral mapping, registration of real properties, ownership and legal rights, real property valuation, and taxation are all combined within one basic cadastral system (real estate register) maintained by the National Land Survey: 

Intellectual Property Rights

The Finnish legal system protects intellectual property rights (IPR), and Finland adheres to numerous related international agreements.

Finland is mentioned in USTR’s 2021 Notorious Markets List for reportedly hosting a Flokinet server associated with infringing activity, and reportedly hosting FLVTO web server in Finland.

In 2022, the government adopted a resolution on the national intellectual property strategy. In the government’s vision, by 2030, Finland’s operating environment concerning intellectual property rights (IPR) will support innovation activities and creative work effectively and increase economic well-being and competitiveness in a way that considers the realization of fundamental rights and different social interests. Intellectual property rights (copy and design rights, trademarks, and patents) protect intangible assets. 

Finland is a member of the World International Property Organization (WIPO) and party to a number of its treaties, including the Berne Convention, the Paris Convention, the Patent Cooperation Treaty, the WIPO Copyright Treaty, the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty, and the International Convention for the Protection of Performers, Producers of Phonograms and Broadcasting Organizations (Rome Convention). Finland is party to the World Trade Organization’s Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).

Copyrights: The Finnish Copyright Act can be found at: 
Assessment of the Finnish Copyright system can be found at: 

Distribution of information on copyright and surveillance of rights is performed by the Copyright Information and Anti-Piracy Centre (CIAPC).

Trademarks: The new Finnish Trademarks Act entered into force in May 2019. With this act, Finland implemented the revised EU Trademark Directive, enforces the Singapore Treaty on the Law of Trademarks, and brings the 1964 trademark regulations up to date. Provisions concerning collective marks and control marks are included in the act, which nullified the Act on Collective Marks. The act also includes amendments to related legislation such as the Finnish Company Names Act, the Criminal Code, and relevant procedural acts. Trademark applicants or proprietors not domiciled in Finland are required to have a representative resident in the European Economic Area. Finland is party to the Madrid Protocol.

Trade secrets: In August 2018, Finland adopted a new Trade Secrets Act to incorporate the provisions of the EU Directive 2016/943 on Trade Secrets. The new act replaces the Unfair Business Practices Act and provides harmonized definitions at the EU level for trade secrets, their lawful and unlawful acquisition, and their use and disclosure. The act also includes a whistleblower provision according to which a person (e.g. an employee) is allowed to disclose a trade secret in order to reveal malpractice or illegal activity, so long as it is done to protect the public interest and the person has significant reasons to reveal the information.

The Trade Secrets Act can be found at: 

In January 2023, the new Act on the Protection of Whistleblowers (the “Whistleblower Act”) entered into force in Finland, concluding the lengthy implementation process of the Directive (EU) 2019/1937 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2019 on the protection of persons who report breaches of Union law. The act protects persons (so-called whistleblowers) who report on particular national and Union law breaches. All companies employing 50 people or more must establish an internal reporting channel, with a transition period for businesses employing 50–249 people extending to December 2023.

Patents: Patent rights in Finland are consistent with international standards, and a granted patent is valid for 20 years. The Finnish Patent and Registration Office (PRH) website contains unofficial translations in English of the Patents Act, Patents Decree, and Patent Regulation: 

The regulatory framework for process patents filed before 1995, and pending in 1996, denied adequate protection to many of the top-selling U.S. pharmaceutical products currently on the Finnish market. For this reason, Finland was placed on USTR’s Special 301 Report Watch List in 2009 but was removed in 2015 when the term for relevant patents expired.

Designs: Finland is party to the Locarno Agreement and the Hague Agreement for Industrial Designs, and design are protected by the Finnish Registered Designs Act. The Designs Register at the Finnish Patent and Registration Office (PRH) contains entries about national designs, i.e. design rights, applied for and registered in Finland: 

Finnish Customs officers have ex-officio authority to seize and destroy counterfeit goods. IPR enforcement in Finland is based on EU Regulation 608/2013. At the end of 2022, Customs intensified the control of counterfeit goods in postal traffic by developing, e.g., the risk analysis of postal traffic. The long-term trend indicates a decline in counterfeit goods detected in large volume shipments. The further decline is most recently due to a steep slowdown in transports from Russia in addition to the impact of the COVID pandemic. However, due to increased online purchases, small volume shipments via postal and express freight traffic have increased in number, and these are more difficult to screen for counterfeits: 

The link to WIPO’s list of IPR legislation can be found at: 
For additional information about treaty obligations and points of contact at local IP offices, please see WIPO’s country profiles here: 

Capital Markets and Portfolio Investment

Finland is open to foreign portfolio investment and has an effective regulatory system. According to the Bank of Finland, at the end of 2022, Finland had EUR 15.064 billion worth of official reserve assets, mainly in foreign currency reserves and securities. Credit is allocated on market terms and is made available to foreign investors in a non-discriminatory manner, and private sector companies have access to a variety of credit instruments. Legal, regulatory, and accounting systems are transparent and consistent with international norms.

The Helsinki Stock Exchange is part of OMX, referred to as NASDAQ OMX Helsinki (OMXH). NASDAQ OMX Helsinki is part of the NASDAQ OMX Nordic division, together with the Stockholm, Copenhagen, Iceland, and Baltic (Tallinn, Riga, and Vilnius) stock exchanges.

Finland accepts the obligations under IMF Article VIII, Sections 2(a), 3, and 4 of the Fund’s Articles of Agreement. It maintains an exchange system free of restrictions on payments and transfers for current international transactions, except for those measures imposed for security reasons in accordance with Regulations of the Council of the European Union.

Money and Banking System

Finland has a resilient, digitally advanced, and well-capitalized banking sector characterized by cooperative banking and pan-Nordic groups. Banking is open to foreign competition. The 190 banks operating in Finland include domestic deposit banks, investment banks, and branches and subsidiaries of foreign credit institutions. The Bank of Finland is the national monetary authority and the central bank of Finland: 

Four significant banks (OP Financial Group, Nordea, Municipality Finance, and Danske Bank) dominate the banking sector holding together 80 percent of the market. Nordea, which relocated its headquarters from Sweden to Finland in 2018, has the leading market position among household and corporate customers in Finland. The relocation increased the Finnish banking sector to over three times the size of Finland’s GDP. Nordea’s balance sheet is approximately twice the size of the GDP of any of the Nordic economies. Finland’s banking sector is one of Europe’s most prominent relative to the size of the national economy. The banking sector has a prudent risk-management approach but high interconnectedness with Nordic banking systems could expose the banking sector to potential external risks.

In 2022, uncertainty and slower economic growth weakened the financial sector’s operating environment globally, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine increased risks to economic development and cyber security. Higher interest rates and the weakening economy may also erode demand for financial sector services. Uncertainty exposes financial markets to sharp market fluctuations, and if asset prices decline, this may increase the investment losses of supervised entities. Due to the changes in the operating environment, the Financial Supervisory Authority’s (FIN-FSA) supervisory priorities in 2023 include credit and liquidity risk management, soundness of corporate governance, and operational risks, such as cyber risks.

The EU is about to boost the resilience of banks operating in the Union and strengthen their supervision and risk management by finalizing the implementation of the globally agreed Basel III regulatory reforms. The Basel III standards bring critical improvements to global financial regulation. They aim to ensure that banks worldwide are better capitalized and more resilient to economic downturns. In times of crisis, they can act as a shield for the economy rather than a shock amplifier. The European Commission has announced plans to defer implementation of the Basel III capital rules until 1 January 2025, two years after the globally agreed timeline.

Foreign nationals can in principle open bank accounts in the same manner as Finns. However, banks must identify customers, and this may prove more difficult for foreign nationals. In addition to personal and address data, the bank often needs to know the person’s identifier code (i.e. social security number), and a number of banks require a work permit, a certificate of studies, or a letter of recommendation from a trustworthy bank, and details regarding the nature of transactions to be made with the account. All authorized deposit-taking banks are members of the Deposit Guarantee Fund, which guarantees customers’ deposits to a maximum of EUR 100,000 per depositor.

The Act on Virtual Currency providers (572/2019) entered into force in May 2019. The Financial Supervisory Authority (FIN-FSA) acts as the registration authority for virtual currency providers. The primary objective of the act is to introduce virtual currency providers into the scope of anti-money laundering regulation. Only virtual currency providers meeting statutory requirements are able to carry on their activities in Finland, and only a FIN-FSA registered virtual currency provider may market its currency and services in Finland.

The Finnish Tax Administration released guidelines on the taxation of cryptocurrency in May 2018, updates were made in October 2019, and new guidelines were released in January 2020 : 

The government has solicited credit ratings from two credit rating agencies: Fitch Ratings and S&P Global Ratings. For long-term debt, they are AA+ (stable outlook) and AA+ (stable outlook), respectively. In addition, other credit rating agencies provide unsolicited ratings. 

Foreign Exchange and Remittances

Foreign Exchange

Finland adopted the Euro as its official currency in January 1999. Finland maintains an exchange system free of restrictions on the making of payments and transfers for international transactions, except for those measures imposed for security reasons.

Remittance Policies

There are no legal obstacles to direct foreign investment in Finnish securities or exchange controls regarding payments into and out of Finland. Banks must identify their customers and report suspected cases of money laundering or the financing of terrorism. Banks and credit institutions must also report single payments or transfers of EUR 15,000 or more. If the origin of funds is suspect, banks must immediately inform the National Bureau of Investigation. There are no restrictions on current transfers or repatriation of profits. Residents and non-residents may hold foreign exchange accounts. There is no limit on dividend distributions as long as they correspond to a company’s official earnings records.

Travelers carrying more than EUR 10,000 must make a declaration upon entering or leaving the EU.

Sovereign Wealth Funds

Solidium is a holding company that is fully owned by the State of Finland. Solidium’s mission is to manage and increase the long-term value of the listed shareholdings of the Finnish State. According to the present Government Program, the proceeds from the sale of state assets are primarily to be used for the repayment of central government debt. The value of Solidium’s all holdings was EUR 8,345 million on 31 December 2022. Solidium is a minority owner in 12 listed companies. 

The Government of Finland GOF, directly or through Solidium, is a significant owner in 16 companies listed on the Helsinki stock exchange. The market value of all state direct shareholdings was approximately USD 30 billion as of April 2023. More info can be found here: 

State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) in Finland are active in chemicals, petrochemicals, plastics, and composites; energy and mining; environmental technologies; food processing and packaging; industrial equipment and supplies; marine technology; media and entertainment; metal manufacturing and products; services; and travel.

In general, SOEs are open to competition except where they have a monopoly position, namely in alcohol retail and gambling. The Ownership Steering Department in the Prime Minister’s Office has ownership steering responsibility for Finnish SOEs, and is responsible for Solidium, a holding company wholly owned by the State of Finland and a minority owner in nationally important listed companies. 

The State Shareholdings and Ownership Steering Act (1368/2007) and the Act Amending the State Shareholdings and Ownership Steering Act ( 1315/2016) regulates the administration of state-owned companies:  and  (only in Finnish).

The Finnish State development company Vake turned into a Climate Fund, focusing on combating climate change, driving digitalization, and advancing low-carbon industry. In 2022, the Finnish Climate Fund made 11 investment decisions totaling 79.9 million euros. More information can be found here: 

Finnish state ownership steering complies with the OECD Principles of Corporate Governance. The Parliamentary Advisory Council in the Prime Minister’s Office serves in an advisory capacity regarding SOE policy; it does not make recommendations regarding the actual business in which the individual companies are engaged. The government has proposed changing its ownership levels in several companies and increasing the number of companies steered by the Prime Minister’s Office. Parliament decides the companies in which the state may relinquish its sole ownership (100 percent), its control of ownership (50.1 percent) or minority ownership (33.4 percent of votes). For more see 

Finland opened domestic rail freight to competition in early 2007, and in July 2016, Fenniarail Oy, the first private rail operator on the Finnish market, began operations. In November 2020, Estonian based Openrail Finland’s rail freight operations started in Finland. Passenger rail transport services will be opened to competition in stages, starting with local rail services in southern Finland. Based on an agreement between Finnish State Railways (VR) and the Ministry of Transport and Communications, VR has exclusive rights to provide passenger transport rail services in Finland until the end of 2030.

The exclusive right applies to all passenger rail transport in Finland, excluding the commuter train transport services, provided by the Helsinki Regional Transport Agency (HSL). HSL put its commuter train transport services out for tender in February 2020, VR won the tender and will continue to provide passenger rail service for the next ten years. The value of southern Finland commuter train services is USD 67 million per year, with 200,000 daily passengers.

Cross-border transportation between Finland and Russia was opened to competition in December 2016. Trains to and from Russia can be operated by any railroad with permission to operate in the EU. This was earlier VR’s exclusive domain. Fenniarail Oy has an agreement with VR regarding information exchange between authorities in Finland and Russia, approvals of rail wagons on the Finnish rail network and the safety of rail wagons. In April 2022, the Board of Directors of VR Group decided to stop freight traffic between Russia and Finland.

Privatization Program

Parliament makes all decisions identifying the companies in which the state may relinquish sole ownership (100 percent of the votes) or control (minimum of 50.1 percent of the votes), while the government decides on the actual sale. The state has privatized companies by selling shares to Finnish and foreign institutional investors, through both public offerings and directly to employees. Sales of direct holdings of the state totaled USD 2.89 billion (2007 – 2018).

The government issued a new resolution on state-ownership policy in April 2020, seeking to maximize overall social and financial benefits, make use of the corporate assets to promote domestic ownership, diversify the economy, create innovations and support sustainable structural change. More info about state ownership can be found here: .

The government promotes Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) through the Ministry of Employment and the Economy CSR Guidelines 

The Committee on Corporate Social Responsibility acts as the Finnish National Contact Point (NCP) for the effective implementation of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (MNEs), together with the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment: 

Currently, there are no other mandatory human rights-related due diligence requirements apart from those set out in the Act on the Placing on the Market of Conflict Minerals and Their Ores (1196/2020) (the Conflict Minerals Act), which improved the transparency of supply chains and brought Finland’s conflict minerals regime into line with EU regulations. Businesses importing conflict minerals (tin, tantalum, tungsten, and gold) from conflict-affected areas into the European Union that exceed certain volume thresholds are subject to the due diligence requirements.

The government’s SOE policy establishes CSR as a core value of SOEs. Finnish companies perceive that the central component of responsible business conduct or corporate responsibility is to conduct due diligence to ensure compliance with law and regulations. There are no national codes for CSR in Finland; rather, Finnish companies and public authorities have promoted global CSR codes, such as the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises; the UN Global Compact for Business and Human Rights; ILO principles; EMAS; ISO standards; and the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). As the EU-level CSR legislation is being drafted, a proposal for an EU Directive on corporate sustainability due diligence was released in March 2022, Finland is preparing to draft national CSR legislation based on the Government Program.

The Directive of the European Parliament and the Council on the disclosure of non-financial information has been implemented via amendments to the Finnish Accounting Act, requiring affected organizations to report on their CSR. The obligation to report non-financial information and corporate responsibility reports apply to large public interest entities, i.e., listed companies, credit institutions, and insurance companies with more than 500 employees. In addition, turnover must be greater than USD 45.4 million or balance sheet exceed more than USD 22.7 million.

Tukes, the Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency, is the competent authority in Finland and Customs is given tasks related to the implementation of the act. For more information: 

Finland is committed to the implementation of the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, and the tripartite declaration of principles concerning multinational enterprises and social policy by the ILO.

Finland has joined the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), which supports improved governance in resource-rich countries. Finland is not a member of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights Initiative.

Finland is a supporter of the Montreux Document on pertinent international legal obligations and good practices for states related to operations of private military and security companies during armed conflict, but the Finnish government is not a member of ICoCA, the international Code of Conduct for Private Security Service Providers’ Association.

The Finnish Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment (TEM) has appointed a working group to support preparations on due diligence, in addition to review a judicial analysis on a CSR Act. The Committee’s term is January 2021 to December 2023.

Labor and environmental laws and regulations are not waived to attract or retain investments and the government published a guide to socially responsible public procurement in November 2017: 

The Corporate Responsibility Network (FiBS) is the largest corporate responsibility network in the Nordic countries and has more than 300 members: 

The Human Rights Center (HRC), administratively linked to the Office of the Parliamentary Ombudsman, encourages foreign and local enterprises to follow the most important international norms: 

The MVO Nederland CSR Risk Checker identified two country risks for Finland: Labor rights (labor conditions/contracts and working hours) and Environment (soil and ground water contamination). More info here: 

The Securities Market Association,, developed and updated (2020) the Finnish Corporate Governance Code for companies listed on the Helsinki Stock Exchange: 

Climate Issues

Finland is strongly committed to the EU’s joint reduction target under the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement and is aiming to become the world’s first carbon-neutral welfare society by 2035. Finland is updating the Climate Change Act to develop more stringent targets for emissions by 2030.

Finland was the first country in the world to set a carbon tax in 1990, and Finnish power plants and industries have participated in the EU Emissions Trading System since 2005. Finland supports the development of carbon markets also around the world and promotes the gradual phase-out of fossil fuel subsidies.

The EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) covers more than 40% of the total greenhouse gas emissions in the EU and just under half of the greenhouse gas emissions in Finland. The ETS aims to keep the greenhouse gas emissions of industrial and energy production plants and flights within the European Economic Area (EEA) below the EU-wide emissions cap for the emissions trading sector. In 2022, the total emissions of Finnish plants included in the EU emissions trading scheme amounted to 19.0 million tons of carbon dioxide. Emissions from Finland’s emissions trading sector decreased by 1.3 million tons (by 6.4%) from the 2021 emissions. 

The national targets set in the Finnish Government Plan (2019) are more stringent than EU-imposed obligations. Under current legislation, Finland’s national target is to achieve a minimum reduction of 80 percent in emissions by 2050 compared to 1990 levels. PM Marin’s government has set a goal to achieve carbon neutral status by 2035 and carbon negative status shortly thereafter. Finland’s Annual Climate Report 2021 suggests that while emissions declined in 2020, achieving carbon neutrality by 2035 will require additional action.

In 2020, the Finnish Government announced plans to form a Climate Fund focusing on combating climate change, boosting low-carbon industry, and promoting digitalization. Approximately 65 percent of the Climate Fund’s investments relate to climate change and about 35 percent to climate-related digitalization. Depending on the funding category and target, the funding by the Climate Fund can vary between 1 and 20 million euros.

Finland ranks first on the 2021 Information Technology and Innovation Foundation’s (ITIF’s) Global Energy Innovation Index (GEII). The GEII reveals varied contributions nations make to the global innovation system. Finland, a top contributor overall to the global energy innovation system, ranks first for entrepreneurial experimentation and market formation, a ranking it also held in 2016. Finland’s top score is in market readiness and technology adoption, which assesses a nation’s demand-pull on clean energy innovation through its energy efficiency and clean energy consumption.

On MIT’s Green Future Index, Finland ranked sixth among 76 leading countries and territories. The index measures progress and commitment towards building a low carbon future. According to the index, Finland fosters an extensive green tech R&D ecosystem, with leading-edge renewables (such as green hydrogen) and food tech.

Ecological sustainability is one of Finland’s primary goals. In 2022, Finland was ranked first in the UN’s Sustainable Development Report, which compares 193 UN member states based on 17 sustainability goals. Finland has launched a new sustainable development strategy built around the SDG goals to strengthen the work to advance sustainable development across government terms. Drawn up by the National Commission on Sustainable Development, the strategy extends until 2030. More information: 

Last year the Finns designated about 4,700 hectares of forest for permanent protection under the Forest Biodiversity Program for Southern Finland METSO. The program aims to establish 96,000 hectares of new protected areas by 2025.

Finland also aims to be a forerunner of ecological public procurement. Finland’s first National Public Procurement Strategy, launched in September 2020, focuses on developing strategic management and promoting procurement expertise. To support the achievement of ecological, social, and economic goals in society through public procurement, it is important to develop a strong culture of knowledge-based management. For more see: 

In April 2021, the Finnish Government adopted a government resolution on Finland’s national risk assessment and action plan on money laundering and terrorist financing. The assessment found that all sectors experience challenges in identifying signs of terrorist financing and sectors with the highest risk of money laundering are money remitters (hawala operators) and virtual currency providers.

Finland’s money laundering and terrorist financing national action plan (2021-2023) sets out measures to reduce the risks of money laundering and terrorist financing. More information here: 

The National Risk Assessment of 2018 does not list corruption as a risk in Finland, nor does the 2017 Security Strategy for Society. Over the past decade, Finland has ranked in the top three on Transparency International’s (TI) Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI).

As a Financial Action Task Force (FATF) member, Finland observes most of FATF’s 40 recommendations. In its Mutual Evaluation Report of Finland, released October 5, 2021, FATF concluded that Finland’s measures to combat money laundering and terrorist financing are delivering good results, but that deficiencies on the lack of specific requirements for risk-based supervision and monitoring of non-profit organizations (NPOs) at risk of terrorist financing (TF) abuse and sharing information promptly with competent authorities remain unaddressed.

Finland passed new legislation (the Act on Money Collection 2020), completed its National Risk Assessment of Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (NRA 2021) in March 2021, and developed an Action Plan for National Risk Assessment of Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing 2021– 2023. Finland’s AML/CFT legislation was amended in 2019 to introduce the Finnish Trade Register of beneficial owners of legal entities and foreign trusts. The National AML/CFT Coordination Group has also developed a public AML/CFT website to improve the understanding of ML/TF risks and provide guidance on reporting suspicious transactions for obliged entities. FATF’s Mutual Evaluation Report of Finland, October 2021: 

In Finland, the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive was implemented, among other things, by means of the Act on the Bank and Payment Accounts Control System, which entered into force on May 1, 2019. In accordance with the act, Customs has established a bank and payment accounts register and issued a regulation on a data retrieval system, which entered into force on September 1, 2020. Finland is in the process of amending the Act on the Bank and Payment Accounts Control System and the Act on the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) to implement the EU Directive on access to financial information.

In Finland, responsibility for the development of AML/CFT legislation lies with the Ministry of Finance. This page provides a list of regulation on the prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing: 
In 2022, Finland was ranked second on the CPI, and ranked third in the world on the Democracy Index civil liberties score with an overall score of 9.27. Finland scored 10 in electoral process and pluralism, 9.29 in the functioning of the government, 8.89 in political participation, 8.75 in political culture, and 8.41 in civil liberties. 

Corruption in Finland is covered by the Criminal Code and penalties range from fines to imprisonment of up to four years. The Criminal Code divides bribery offenses into two categories, giving bribes to public officials or acceptance of bribes and giving or acceptance of bribes in business. Finland has statutory tax rules concerning non-deductibility of bribes. Finland does not have an authority specifically charged to prevent corruption. Instead, several authorities and agencies contribute to anti-corruption work. The Ministry of Justice coordinates anti-corruption matters, but Finland’s EU anti-corruption contact is the Ministry of the Interior. The National Bureau of Investigation also monitors corruption, while the tax administration has guidelines obliging tax officials to report suspected offenses, including foreign bribery, and the Ministry of Finance has guidelines on hospitality, benefits, and gifts. The Ministry of Justice describes its anti-corruption efforts at 

In 2020, the Ministry of Employment and Economy released an Anti-Corruption guide intended for companies, especially SMEs, to provide them with guidance and support for promoting good business practices and corruption-free business relations both in Finland and abroad. For more see: 

The Ministry of Justice is maintaining an website,  providing both ordinary citizens and professional operators with impartial and fact-based information on corruption and its prevention in Finland. The goal is a transparent, impartial, and corruption-free culture and society.

The Act on a Candidate’s Election Funding (273/2009) delineates election funding and disclosure rules. The act requires presidential candidates, Members of Parliament, and Deputy Members to declare total campaign financing, the financial value of each contribution, and donor names for donations exceeding EUR 1,500:

The Act on Political Parties (10/1969) concerning the funding of political parties is at:

The National Audit Office of Finland keeps a register containing election-funding disclosures at: Election funding disclosures must be filed with the National Audit Office of Finland within two months of election results being confirmed.

Finland does not regulate lobbying. The new Transparency Register Act obligates lobbyists to provide information on lobbying targeted at Parliament and ministries to the Transparency Register from the beginning of 2024. The National Audit Office of Finland controls the Transparency Register and will monitor compliance with the obligation to provide information to the Register.

The Ministry of Justice is responsible for monitoring and developing the Transparency Register legislation. The Transparency Register Guide contains a general description, key concepts, and the related procedures and published actors. The guide answers questions such as who is subject to the obligation to provide information to the Transparency Register, what kind of information must be provided to the Register and when, and how the Transparency Register is monitored. The guide is available in Finnish, Swedish and English. 

The Finnish Association of Communications Professionals (ProCom) keeps a voluntary lobbyist registry (in Finnish).

The ethical Guidelines of the Finnish Prosecution Service can be found at a website that was opened on October 1, 2019. 

Finland has ratified the following conventions, or they are in force: the Convention on Laundering, Search, Seizure, and Confiscation of the Proceeds from Crime; the Council of Europe Civil Law Convention on Corruption; the Criminal Law Convention on Corruption; the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime; and, the UN Anticorruption Convention. Finland is a member of the European Partners against Corruption (EPAC).

Finland is a signatory to the OECD Convention on Anti-Bribery. In October 2020, the OECD working group on bribery said it recognizes Finland’s commitment to combat corruption but is concerned about lack of foreign bribery enforcement. For more see Finland’s 4th evaluation report:

In October 2020, the Council of Europe’s anticorruption body, GRECO (Group of States against Corruption), addressed 14 recommendations to Finland on preventing corruption and promoting integrity in central governments (top executive functions) and compliance with these recommendations. For more see GRECO’s 5th evaluation round, Finland compliance report: 

The National Bureau of Investigation is responsible for the investigation of organized and international crimes, including economic crime and corruption, and operates an anti-corruption unit to detect economic offenses. Finland adopted the first national anti-corruption strategy in May 2021. The strategy is in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (2030 Agenda) and the recommendations issued by the UN, the OECD, the Council of Europe, and the European Union to Finland to reinforce its anti-corruption work.

At the beginning of 2017, the Public Procurement Act, based on the new EU directives on public procurement, entered into force. Under the law, a foreign bribery conviction remains mandatory grounds for exclusion from public contracts (section 80: mandatory exclusion criteria).

Resources to Report Corruption

Contact at the government agency or agencies that are responsible for combating corruption:
Markku Ranta-Aho
Head of Financial Crime Division
National Board of Investigation
P.O. Box 285, 01310
Vantaa, Finland 

Contact at a “watchdog” organization:
Jaakko Korhonen
Transparency Finland 

In 2022, The Ministry of the Interior published the National Counter-Terrorism Strategy 2022–2025 to guide national and international counter-terrorism activities. Finland combats terrorism, violent radicalization, and extremism to safeguard national interests and foster the safety and security of the country and its population. The Ministry of the Interior monitors the achievement of objectives and will prepare an interim report in 2024.

The Finnish Security and Intelligence Service estimates the threat of terrorism in Finland to stand at level 2, ‘Elevated’, on the four-tier scale. While the threat level has remained unchanged since 2017, based on recent developments, the threat of far-right terrorism now gives rise to more significant concern. 

While instances of political violence in Finland are rare, extremism exists, and anti-immigration and anti-Semitic incidents do occur. Stickers and posters with anti-Semitic images and messages were placed on the synagogue of Helsinki’s Jewish congregation, in neighborhoods with significant Jewish populations, and on public property throughout 2021. The vandalism ranged from targeted to apparently random, and similar incidents had occurred numerous times over the previous three years. Some of the anti-Semitic graffiti and stickers claimed to be produced and placed by the banned neo-Nazi Nordic Resistance Movement (NRM). Stickers specifically targeted Jewish community members at lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex (LGBTQI+) pride events.

In 2019, 15 anti-Semitic acts of vandalism against the Israeli Embassy over an 18-month period prompted an official demarche from the Government of Israel to Finnish officials. The NRM is banned in Finland, as is its Facebook page. However, in January 2021 the daily newspaper Helsingin Sanomat reported that the NRM continued to operate out of public sight and without a clear name. In June 2021, prosecutors charged nine members of the NRM with engaging in illegal association for continuing NRM activities under the organization of the group Toward Freedom! (Kohti Vapautta! in Finnish) and leading a demonstration at Tampere Central Market in October 2020. There were a few anti-Semitic incidents on International Holocaust Remembrance Day at the beginning of 2020, but the banning of NRM and COVID-19 led to a marked decline in anti-Semitic incidents over the past two years.

It is illegal in Finland to share violent content such as footage of the massacre that took place in Christchurch, New Zealand, but it is still being disseminated and no one has been prosecuted. In August 2017, a stabbing attack took place in central Turku, in southwest Finland, in which two pedestrians were killed and eight injured. Finnish authorities considered the attack a terrorist act and its perpetrator was convicted on terrorism charges, making it the first incident of its kind in Finland since the end of World War II.

In December 2021, the Finnish Intelligence Service (SUPO) announced that the first terrorism investigation of the extreme right in Finland had started. Although the investigation is exceptional, it does not affect SUPO’s terrorist threat assessment, according to which the most significant threat is posed by lone operators or small groups inspired by far-right or radical Islamist ideology.

According to SUPO’s most recent 2020 yearbook, released in March 2021, the danger of extreme right-wing terrorism had grown in Finland, and SUPO had identified far-right operators with the capacity and motivation to mount a terrorist attack. Some indications of concrete preparation have also emerged. The threat of radical Islamist terrorism has remained at the previous level.

The Fund for Peace (FFP) ranked Finland as the most stable country in the world again in 2021 in the Fragile States Index based on political, social, and economic indicators including public services, income distribution, human rights, and the rule of law. Marsh’s Political Risk Map 2021, based on Marsh Specialty’s World Risk Review platform, provides risk ratings for 197 countries on a 0.1 to 10 scale, with 10 representing the highest risk and 0.1 the lowest. Finland was rated low risk, with ratings ranging from 1.2 to 3.9.

In January 2023, the number of employed persons was 2,558,000, and that of unemployed persons 211,000. The employment rate among persons aged 20 to 64 was 78.4 percent. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment’s labor market forecast estimates that despite challenges, employment will grow slowly until 2024. The labor force participation rate will also increase due to shrinking age groups. Expanding the labor force will mainly be possible by increasing immigration during the forecast period.

According to a survey by ETLA Economic Research, the share of foreign workers in the Finnish labor market almost doubled from 4 percent in 2010 to 7.5 percent in 2020, accompanied by a rise in the employment rate among migrants. Most migrants currently work in retail and services, though an increasing number are specialists and experts. To fill available jobs, ETLA estimates that the import of foreign workers must increase to 40,000 per year during the next four-year parliamentary term – twice the current level.

Finland has a long tradition of trade unions. The country has a unionization rate of 59 percent, and approximately 90 percent of employees in Finland participate in the collective bargaining system. Extensive tripartite cooperation between the government, employers’ groups, and trade unions characterizes the country’s labor market system. Any trade union and employers’ association may make collective agreements, and the ministry decides on the validity of the agreement. The Act on Employment Contracts regulates employment relationships regarding working hours, annual leave, and safety conditions, although minimum wages, actual working hours, and working conditions are determined to a large extent through collective agreements instead of parliamentary legislation.

Collective bargaining and collective labor agreements are generally binding. In recent years, local labor market partners have been given more flexibility to enforce the collective agreements. In Fall 2020, the government decided to commission a report on measures to strengthen the trust and negotiating competence required for local collective bargaining within both generally binding collective agreements and normally binding collective agreements. The aim is to develop and advance local collective bargaining through the system of collective agreements. The report, launched in March 2021, concluded that local bargaining continues to have a great potential in the field of so-called normally binding collective agreements.

Finland adheres to most ILO conventions; enforcement of worker rights is effective. Freedom of association and collective bargaining are guaranteed by law, which provides for the right to form and join independent unions, conduct legal strikes, and bargain collectively. The law prohibits anti-union discrimination and any obstruction of these rights. The National Conciliator under the Ministry of Employment and the Economy assists negotiating partners with labor disputes. The arbitration system is based on the Act on Mediation in Labor Disputes and the Labor Court is the highest body for settlement. The ILO’s Finland Country profile can be found here: 

The Ministry of Employment and the Economy is responsible for drafting labor legislation and the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health is responsible for enforcing labor laws and regulations via the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) authorities of the OSH Divisions at the Regional State Administrative Agencies, which operate under the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health. Finnish authorities adequately enforce contract, wage, and overtime laws. New legislation concerning the hiring of foreign workers in Finland entered into force on June 18, 2016. Its objective is to intensify monitoring and to ensure improved compliance with the terms of employment in Finland. Finland allows the free movement of EU citizen workers.

In September 2021, Statistics Finland reported that between 2010 and 2020, the number of working-age people had fallen by 136,000 persons, and during the next two decades the working age population is expected to decrease more slowly, by 76,000 persons, by 2040. While the number of people belonging to younger age groups declined over the period 2015 – 2020 period in Finland, the age group of 60 years and older continued to increase. By the end of 2020, the number of people aged 60 or older was over 1.6 million of Finland’s total population of roughly 5.53 million people.

The government reformed social protection and unemployment security to encourage people to accept job offers, shorten unemployment periods, reduce structural unemployment, and save public resources. The unemployed are granted a labor market subsidy, which, if linked to earnings as is the case for about 60 percent of the unemployed, guarantees moderate income for a period up to 400 working days. Those without jobs after the 400-day period need to demonstrate that they are actively pursuing employment to continue receiving benefits. The period of eligibility was shortened from 500 days to 400 days starting on January 1, 2017, except for those with a work history shorter than three years (reduced to 300 days), and for those aged over 58 with an employment history of at least five years (remains 500 days).

Transparency International estimates the size of Finland’s informal economy to be 13 percent, representing approximately USD 39 billion at GDP PPP levels. According to Finland’s Ministry of Interior, the share of the grey economy of GDP ranges from USD 1.2 to 16.6 billion. In June 2020, a Strategy and Action Plan for tackling the Grey Economy and Economic Crime (2020-2023) was adopted. For more see Grey Economy and Economic Crime website:  

The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation, DFC, does not operate in Finland.

Table 2: Key Macroeconomic Data, U.S. FDI in Host Country/Economy
Host Country Statistical source* USG or international statistical source USG or International Source of Data:  BEA; IMF; Eurostat; UNCTAD, Other
Economic Data Year Amount Year Amount
Host Country Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ($M USD) 2021 250,59


2021 $297.3
Foreign Direct Investment Host Country Statistical source* USG or international statistical source USG or international Source of data:  BEA; IMF; Eurostat; UNCTAD, Other
U.S. FDI in partner country ($M USD, stock positions) 2021 1,687


2021 $6,487 BEA data available at
Host country’s FDI in the United States ($M USD, stock positions) 2021 4,131


2021 $ 10,086 BEA data available at
Total inbound stock of FDI as % host GDP 2021 30,41% 2021 29,12% OECD data available at |

Table 3: Sources and Destination of FDI
Direct Investment from/in Counterpart Economy Data
From Top Five Sources/To Top Five Destinations (US Dollars, Millions)
Inward Direct Investment Outward Direct Investment
Total Inward Amount 100% Total Outward Amount 100%
Sweden EUR22874 30.0% Sweden EUR28507 22.8%
Netherlands EUR11656 15.3% Netherlands EUR21466 17.2%
Luxembourg EUR9870 13.0% Ireland EUR17765 14.2%
Norway EUR5234 6.7% Norway EUR9261 7.4%
Hongkong EUR3898 5.1% Denmark EUR8526 6.8%
“0” reflects amounts rounded to +/- USD 500,000.

On This Page

  2. 1. Openness To, and Restrictions Upon, Foreign Investment
    1. Limits on Foreign Control and Right to Private Ownership and Establishment
    2. Other Investment Policy Reviews
    3. Business Facilitation
    4. Outward Investment
  3. 2. Bilateral Investment and Taxation Treaties
  4. 3. Legal Regime
    1. Transparency of the Regulatory System
    2. International Regulatory Considerations
    3. Legal System and Judicial Independence
    4. Laws and Regulations on Foreign Direct Investment
    5. Competition and Antitrust Laws
    6. Expropriation and Compensation
    7. Dispute Settlement
      1. ICSID Convention and New York Convention
      2. Investor-State Dispute Settlement
      3. International Commercial Arbitration and Foreign Courts
    8. Bankruptcy Regulations
  5. 4. Industrial Policies
    1. Investment Incentives
    2. Foreign Trade Zones/Free Ports/Trade Facilitation
    3. Performance and Data Localization Requirements
  6. 5. Protection of Property Rights
    1. Real Property
    2. Intellectual Property Rights
  7. 6. Financial Sector
    1. Capital Markets and Portfolio Investment
    2. Money and Banking System
    3. Foreign Exchange and Remittances
      1. Foreign Exchange
      2. Remittance Policies
    4. Sovereign Wealth Funds
  8. 7. State-Owned Enterprises
    1. Privatization Program
  9. 8. Responsible Business Conduct
  10. Additional Resources
    1. Climate Issues
  11. 9. Corruption
    1. Resources to Report Corruption
  12. 10. Political and Security Environment
  13. 11. Labor Policies and Practices
  14. 12. U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), and Other Investment Insurance or Development Finance Programs
  15. 13. Foreign Direct Investment Statistics
  16. 14. Contact for More Information
2023 Investment Climate Statements: Finland
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