Priorities of maritime policy

The Government decided on the guidelines for maritime policy in 2019 and drew up an action plan based on the guidelines in March 2022. These documents form the framework for developing maritime policy. The key priorities for maritime policy are the protection of the seas, the maritime cluster, and marine production.

Protection of the seas

Marine environments, both in the Baltic Sea and globally, are facing ever-increasing pressures: warming and acidification caused by climate change, littering, decline in biodiversity, oil spills and chemical accidents, eutrophication, and overfishing. Finland will increase its influence on the decision-making concerning the governance, protection and sustainable use of the seas and oceans.

Improving and protecting the state of the Baltic Sea has mainly been discussed in Finland’s action programmes for waterways and marine management, the Baltic Marine Environment Commission’s Baltic Sea Action Plan (HELCOM BSAP) and the EU’s Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR) and its action plan. The Maritime Policy Action Plan complements these measures, especially at the global level.

Maritime cluster

Oceans and seas provide major opportunities for a sustainable blue economy. The maritime cluster is an important economic operator in Finland. It consists of the maritime industry, shipping and port operations. Net sales in the maritime cluster totalled more than EUR 14 million in 2019, and it employed around 50,000 people that same year. 

Globally, the seas represent the most important transport channel: shipping accounts for more than 80 per cent of transport volumes, and the volume of goods carried by sea is predicted to grow even further. Maritime transport is vital for Finland, as approximately 90 percent of Finnish exports of goods and 80 per cent of imports of goods are carried by sea. Maintaining competitiveness and making use of opening markets are key factors for the growth of the maritime cluster. Maritime transport and the logistics sector as a whole will be facing great changes. The aim is to make maritime logistics a growing industry in Finland to pave way for digitalisation, autonomic transport and emissions abatement.

Marine production

Oceans and seas provide opportunities for sustainable and low-carbon food and energy production. Finland’s competence makes it possible to develop aquaculture at the global level using advanced technology and alternative cultivation methods and species. Finland’s marine energy competence can be developed, scaled and exported with the aim to achieve energy production that is ecological, sustainable and as carbon neutral as possible.