Questions and answers about the impact of the coronavirus
Impact on the economy
The Government submitted a supplementary budget proposal to Parliament on 20 March.
This supplementary budget focuses on the costs of combatting the coronavirus outbreak and of the preparedness measures. These costs relate particularly to the work of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and the agencies and bodies within its branch of government.
The Government submitted the year’s second supplementary budget proposal to Parliament on 9 April.
This supplementary budget includes measures supporting people’s health and livelihoods, improvements in the situation for municipalities, business activity in general, rural businesses, and culture and sports.
The Government submitted the year’s third supplementary budget proposal to Parliament on 8 May.
This proposal focuses in particular on easing the financial situation of businesses and covering the costs of managing the coronavirus situation and combating the effects. In further supplementary budget proposals to be made this year, the Government will also assess the need for other coronavirus-related appropriation increases and, more broadly, measures to support the economy. The Government plans to submit economic stimulus proposals to Parliament in a supplementary budget proposal at the beginning of June.
The Government submitted the year’s fourth supplementary budget proposal to Parliament on 5 June
This fourth supplementary budget proposal for 2020 is part of the Government's coronavirus crisis follow-up package, which focuses on ensuring an economically, ecologically and socially sustainable emergence from the crisis. The supplementary budget proposal contains a package of measures amounting to EUR 5.5 billion for supporting the recovery and revitalisation of the economy.
The Government submitted the year’s fifth supplementary budget proposal to Parliament on 3 September
In its proposal, the Government proposes EUR 60 million in temporary financing to compensate for the costs incurred due to the COVID-19 epidemic. The proposal focuses only on the essential appropriations that must be processed before the sixth supplementary budget proposal for 2020
Communicable diseases such as the coronavirus and especially the measures taken to combat it have adverse impacts on the economy in a number of ways. Some of these negative impacts are direct, some are indirect.
Direct impacts arise from workplaces being closed down, absence from work due to sickness, resources used to treat those who have fallen ill, and loss of earnings.
Pandemic has adverse impacts on the domestic demand, especially in the service sector. At the same time, uncertainty keeps growing and the confidence of both businesses and households weakens, leading to a further and significant decrease in the demand.
In addition, disturbances in both domestic and global production chains delay or permanently reduce production.
Communicable diseases and measures to combat them have indirect impacts e.g. on work efficiency. They may also increase the costs of investments and delay decisions on these, reduce inputs in knowledge and skills of the workforce, and cause costs to the public sector.
The duration of the indirect impacts depends on the duration of the pandemic and measures to combat it, and on whether permanent changes take place in consumer behaviour and in the functioning of the production chains.
If you have temporary financial difficulties and you need more time for paying your taxes, you can ask for a payment arrangement. While you have a payment arrangement in force, the Tax Administration will not send the taxes included in the arrangement to the enforcement authorities for recovery.
The terms for the Tax Administration’s payment arrangements will be eased for the time being because of the coronavirus. The Ministry of Finance will propose a legal amendment that lays down temporary provisions on reduced late-payment interest on the taxes covered by such arrangements. In addition, the Tax Administration will make other terms of the arrangements more flexible.
The eased terms aim for supporting small businesses that are having financial difficulties.
Verohallinnon puhelinpalvelut yrityksille, yhteisöille ja henkilöasiakkaille ma–pe klo 9–16.15, heinäkuussa klo 9–15.
Opening hours and border crossings for commercial traffic are unchanged. Airports are an exception to this, as the Government has ordered airport closures. For commercial traffic, remote systems can also be used to make the customs clearance.
Goods traffic is continuing, and so Customs controls and inspections of goods are conducted as usual.
Updated 24.3.2021 at 15.23
Ministry of Finance
Impact on the municipalities
In a state of emergency, municipal management is based on the same management system as in normal circumstances, in accordance with administrative regulations and under the Local Government Act (410/2015). However, special arrangements apply to municipal decision-making. In a state of emergency, municipalities' preparedness obligation is based on the preparedness obligation laid down in the Emergency Powers Act. Under the Act, municipalities, joint municipal authorities and other intermunicipal bodies must ensure, by means of contingency plans, prior preparation of emergency operations and other measures, that their duties will be performed with the least amount of disruption also in emergency conditions (1552/2011, section 12).
Due to the coronavirus outbreak, municipalities should ready their preparedness organisation. The body of the preparedness organisation is made up of the municipality’s senior management group supplemented, for example, by other parties belonging to the local authority corporation (e.g. water supply and services and the support services that are important for the continuity of the municipality’s operation, such as cleaning and catering) and, where appropriate, by other representatives of key stakeholders.
In a state of emergency, the following tasks and areas are of key importance:
the municipality’s own, broader regional and national situational awareness, access to information and the communication on situational awareness between different parties
proactive planning and appropriate use of resources
management in line with the circumstance
organisation of cooperation and coordination between different parties
communication within and outside the municipality, taking into account the information needs of residents, cooperation bodies and stakeholders.
Each administrative branch should examine the terms and conditions for managing disruptions, included in the agreements between municipalities and private service providers.
In addition to organising service provision, municipalities should remember to maintain the situational picture concerning the impact of the outbreak and of the state of emergency on the costs and income base of the municipality’s operation.
Ministry of Finance
Electronic systems can be used for holding meetings of local government decision-making bodies. Their use must be in accordance with the administrative regulations of the municipality. The Local Government Act (410/2015) provides ample opportunities for decision-making to be carried out remotely, on a location-independent basis.
A temporary amendment to the Local Government Act came into force at the beginning of May 2020, allowing a municipality or joint municipal authority to decide on the temporary use of electronic meetings and electronic decision-making procedures in all of its decision-making bodies.
Participants who are, for example, in quarantine can also make use of electronic systems to take part in municipal decision-making. Matters pertaining to a decision-making body can be decided on
at an actual meeting or
at a meeting taking place in an electronic environment (electronic meeting), or
by electronic means prior to a meeting (closed electronic decision-making procedure, possible in bodies other than the municipal council).
Under the temporary amendment to the Local Government Act, the local executive in a municipality or joint municipal authority may decide to introduce new digital meeting arrangements that allow the use of electronic meetings on a more flexible basis than before. This type of meeting may be held via, for example, a videoconferencing connection. The visual and audio connections do not necessarily need to remain continuous and unbroken throughout the meeting. The meeting nevertheless requires that:
the participants in the meeting can be ascertained reliably,
the chairperson can lead the meeting and
the participants can follow the course of the meeting and participate in the deliberations.
Meetings can also be arranged electronically in such a way that some participants are present at the meeting venue and others participate remotely. It these cases, however, care must be taken to ensure that everybody has an equal opportunity to participate.
At electronic meetings and in the electronic decision-making procedure, the municipality must ensure information security and take care that information to be kept secret is not accessible by outsiders. In addition, the municipality must ensure that meetings which are publicly accessible can still be accessed and followed when the meeting is held remotely, as an electronic meeting. Under the temporary provisions of the Local Government Act, the local executive may decide that publicly accessible meetings can only be followed electronically.
The rule does not concern local government bodies. Meetings are not prohibited.
The Government or the regional administration authorities may place limits on the number of members of the public allowed to attend public local council meetings at different phases of the epidemic. It is recommended that the public be provided the option of following local council meetings online.
The Government’s instruction to avoid meetings does not concern the positions of trust in local government. Persons holding positions of trust who are over 70 years old may also participate in the meetings of local government bodies. However, quarantine or health considerations may in practise constitute an obstacle to participating in a meeting.
Updated 14.1.2021 at 12.09
Ministry of Finance
Impact on the Digital and Population Data Services Agency and digital services
The Digital and Population Data Services Agency will continue to conduct the ceremonies. However, there will be fewer appointments available for civil ceremonies, especially in smaller offices. We ask the couples to bring their own witnesses to the ceremony, but not more than four persons.
Ministry of Finance
The Digital and Population Data Services Agency limits visiting at its service locations to prevent the spread of the corona virus. The service locations serve customers by appointment only. Telephone service serves from 1.9.2020 from 9.00 am to 12.00 am. You can also take care of your matters online. All services for personal customers can be found at https://dvv.fi/en/individuals.
Updated 14.10.2020 at 14.35
Ministry of Finance
At the moment, the situation is largely stable, but any developments will be closely monitored. An exceptional situation may lead to unforeseen failures or overloads that may have an impact on digital public services. Critical services will be secured in all circumstances. There is limited capacity for simultaneous use, which means that certain digital services may need to be prioritised. This may mean temporary restrictions on less critical services.
Ministry of Finance
Network capacity for remote access is being continuously increased and load sharing is in place. This will continue, and network capacity is being constantly monitored. If necessary, telecommunications traffic for remote access will be prioritised. Many tasks can also be performed without remote access.
Ministry of Finance
Valtori’s key task is to ensure that its services operate effectively and without disruption. To ensure effective and undisrupted operation of its services, Valtori draws up various plans, , acts in accordance with these and has contingency procedures. It closely monitors the situation, ensuring an effective response to any new developments. Critical services are organised in such a way that they can continue to operate in exceptional circumstances. The identification of which services are critical is made in collaboration between Valtori and its client agencies.