Imports and exports 

Updated: 7.11.2016 - Next update: 8.12.2016


According to the preliminary statistics of foreign trade of goods provided by Finnish Customs, both the value of exports and the value of imports decreased by one per cent in September compared with the year before. The value of Finnish exports in September was slightly over 4.5 billion euros and the value of imports was 4.6 billion euros. Calculated from the beginning of the year, exports have diminished by five per cent while imports have remained at the level of the previous year.

The trade balance showed a deficit of 70 million euros in September. Calculated from January to September there was a deficit of slightly over 1.8 billion euros. During the same period last year, the balance of trade showed a deficit of 57 million euros. Last year the trade balance for September showed a deficit of 93 million euros.

Exports to EU member states decreased by one per cent in September, while exports to non-EU countries remained at the level of the previous year. Imports from EU-countries increased by four per cent while imports from non-EU countries fell by nine per cent in September. Calculated from the beginning of the year, exports to EU decreased by three per cent and exports to non-EU countries by eight per cent. During the same period, imports from EU member states rose by one per cent, but decreased from other countries by two per cent.

Finnish Customs / Foreign trade statistics

Description of indicator

Foreign Trade Statistics describes the commodity trade between Finland and other Member States of the European Union (EU) and between Finland and Third Countries i.e. the internal and external trade. Foreign Trade Statistics is the official information source on the importation, exportation, and balance of trade of Finland.

Preliminary statistics on foreign trade of goods convey the first monthly data on the foreign trade of Finland. The preliminary statistics present the development of Finland's export, import, and balance of trade both in the aggregate and by the other EU Member States, Euro territory, and countries not in the EU.

The accurate publication dates of the preliminary statistics are announced for abt. one year at a time. The timetable of publication is maintained on the web site of the Finnish Customs. The preliminary statistics on export and import get completed within 40 days upon the expiry of the respective month.

For the purposes of an economic analysis, the preliminary statistics give a reliable picture of the newest development of the foreign trade. They constitute an important instrument for the decision makers as well as planners and researchers in the public and private sectors, both at the national level and within the operations of the EU and several international organizations.

Foreign trade statistics are based on the legislation of the European Community as well as the national Statistics Act (280/04) and Customs Act (1466/94). Within the EU legislation, the compilation of statistics is steered by the Basic Regulation on internal trade statistics (EC, 638/2004), Basic Regulation on external trade statistics (EC, 471/2009), and the respective implementation provisions.

The information on the trade carried on by Finland with the other EU Member States is collected from the compulsory statistical declarations provided monthly by importers and exporters through the Intrastat system of internal trade. The information on the trade between Finland and Third Countries is obtained from customs declarations, which have to be submitted on every import and export consignment. The data on both internal and external trade are put together to form the statistics on the foreign trade of Finland.

As a rule, all goods exported from and imported in Finland are recorded to statistics. The prerequisite for the inclusion in statistics is that the goods physically arrive in or depart from this country. By way of exception, water- and aircraft are recorded to statistics upon a change in the status of ownership. Among other things, neither transit transports nor economic measures of insignificant commercial value are included in the statistics. Also the smallest companies are released from the obligation to declare statistics on internal trade. Neither is foreign trade in services recorded to these statistics.

Foreign trade statistics published by Customs are part of the Official Statistics of Finland (OSF).

Additional information about foreign trade statistics (e.g. quality descriptions, list of statistics and statistics specifications) is available on the Finnish Customs website.