Finland’s National Forest Strategy, adopted by the Government in February 2015, specifies the main objectives for forest-based business and activities until 2025. The strategy was updated in 2019. The strategy is founded on the Government Report on Forest Policy and the Parliamentary opinion on it. Other important background documents are the Finnish Bioeconomy Strategy, the national energy and climate strategies and the National Biodiversity Strategy, for example.
National Forest Strategy aims for growth of welfare and overall sustainability
The vision and objectives of the strategy derive from the Forest Policy Report. The vision is "Sustainable forest management is a source of growing welfare". The three strategic objectives to make the vision come true are:
- Finland is a competitive operating environment for forest-based business,
- Forest-based business and activities and their structures are renewed and diversified and
- Forests are in active, economically, ecologically, socially and culturally sustainable, and diverse use.
The strategy is implemented by a total of ten strategic projects. The completely new projects added to the Forest Strategy apply to climate sustainable forestry, international forest policy and influencing EU policies as well as new products made from wood. More projects than before now also include the diversification of forest management methods, the safeguarding of biodiversity, water protection and the diversification of business. Projects to be considered as cross-cutting include the improvement of the availability and usability of forest, nature and environmental data and facilitation of their integration with other data sources. The cross-cutting projects include also an aim to build trust and cooperation between various actors with pluralistic communication and interaction.
The Forest Council follows the implementation of National Forest Strategy. A great variety of stakeholders, Government ministries, forest administration, research and education, forest owners, forest industry, energy sector, environmental organisations, employer organisations and entrepreneurs as well as youth and leisure-time organisations, are represented in the Forest Council.
Several ministries will participate in the implementation of the National Forest Strategy. The update was approved by the National Forest Council in December 2018 and the Finnish Government confirmed the updated strategy with a resolution on February 21, 2019.
The National Forest Strategy is also implemented through Regional Forest Programmes, where the special regional characteristics are duly taken into account.