Map Finland
Maps copyright Hammond World Atlas Corp.

Flag of Finland


Background: Finland was a province and then a grand duchy under Sweden from the 12th to the 19th centuries, and an autonomous grand duchy of Russia after 1809. It won its complete independence in 1917. During World War II, it was able to successfully defend its freedom and resist invasions by the Soviet Union - albeit with some loss of territory. In the subsequent half century, the Finns made a remarkable transformation from a farm/forest economy to a diversified modern industrial economy; per capita income is now among the highest in Western Europe. A member of the European Union since 1995, Finland was the only Nordic state to join the euro system at its initiation in January 1999. In the 21st century, the key features of Finland's modern welfare state are a high standard of education, equality promotion, and national social security system - currently challenged by an aging population and the fluctuations of an export-driven economy.
Location: Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Gulf of Finland, between Sweden and Russia
Area land: 303,815 sq km
Area water: 34,330 sq km
Coastline: 1,250 km
Country name conventional long form: Republic of Finland
Country name conventional short form: Finland
Country name former: Republic of Finland
Population: 5,259,250 (July 2011 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 16% (male 429,450/female 414,570); 15-64 years: 66.1% (male 1,759,059/female 1,719,173); 65 years and over: 17.8% (male 385,671/female 551,327) (2011 est.);
Population growth rate: 0.075% (2011 est.)
Birth rate: 10.37 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)
Death rate: 10.24 deaths/1,000 population (July 2011 est.)
Net migration rate: 0.62 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2011 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.04 male(s)/female; under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female; 15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female; 65 years and over: 0.69 male(s)/female; total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2011 est.);
Infant mortality rate: total: 3.43 deaths/1,000 live births; male: 3.73 deaths/1,000 live births; female: 3.11 deaths/1,000 live births (2011 est.);
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 79.27 years; male: 75.79 years; female: 82.89 years (2011 est.);
Total fertility rate: 1.73 children born/woman (2011 est.);
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.1% (2009 est.);
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: 2,600 (2009 est.);
HIV/AIDS - deaths: fewer than 100 (2009 est.);
Nationality: noun: Finn(s); adjective: Finnish;
Ethnic groups: Finn 93.4%, Swede 5.6%, Russian 0.5%, Estonian 0.3%, Roma (Gypsy) 0.1%, Sami 0.1% (2006);
Religions: Lutheran Church of Finland 82.5%, Orthodox Church 1.1%, other Christian 1.1%, other 0.1%, none 15.1% (2006);
Languages: Finnish 91.2% (official), Swedish 5.5% (official), other 3.3% (small Sami- and Russian-speaking minorities) (2007);
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read and write; total population: 100%; male: 100%; female: 100% (2000 est.);
GDP (purchasing power parity): $187.6 billion (2010 est.); $181.8 billion (2009 est.); $197.6 billion (2008 est.);

note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate): $238 billion (2010 est.);
GDP - real growth rate: 3.2% (2010 est.); -8% (2009 est.); 0.9% (2008 est.);
GDP - per capita (PPP): $35,300 (2010 est.); $34,600 (2009 est.); $37,700 (2008 est.);
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 2.6%; industry: 29.1%; services: 68.2% (2010 est.);
Population below poverty line: NA%;
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%: 3.6%; highest 10%: 24.7% (2007);
Labor force: 2.68 million (2010 est.);
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture and forestry: 4.9%; industry: 16.7%; construction: 7.1%; commerce: 19.4%; finance, insurance, and business services: 12.8%; transport and communications: 6.3%; public services: 32.8% (2009);
Unemployment rate: 8.4% (2010 est.); 8.2% (2009 est.);
Budget: revenues: $66.58 billion; expenditures: $65.33 billion;
note: Central Government Budget (2010 est.)

Industries: metals and metal products, electronics, machinery and scientific instruments, shipbuilding, pulp and paper, foodstuffs, chemicals, textiles, clothing;
Industrial production growth rate: 6% (2010 est.);
Electricity - production: 77.44 billion kWh (2008 est.);
Electricity - consumption: 87.25 billion kWh (2008);
Electricity - exports: 3.335 billion kWh (2008);
Electricity - imports: 16.11 billion kWh (2008);

Statistics: CIA World Factbook.


Helsingin Sanomat

(N/A), Helsinki


(Swedish People's Party organ), Helsinki

Turun Sanomat

(Independent), Turku

Finland in the News

Finland Debates Its Ties With NATO

Despite the molding of a more active, pragmatic foreign policy since the fall of Communism, Finland seems reluctant to abandon its status of non-commitment and apply for NATO membership.

Low Pay, Low Prestige

Helsingin Sanomat finds that low pay and low prestige are driving Finns away from the teaching profession.