Decisions on new transport infrastructure projects and the scrapping incentive
The Government has agreed on its budget proposal for 2018. In the Budget, funds have been allocated for the car scrapping incentive and for new transport infrastructure development projects, of which one will be funded under the public-private partnership scheme.
The Government agreed in its budget session that EUR 8 million will be allocated for the car scrapping incentive for 2018. Decisions on how the incentive will be implemented will be made later.
"The aim of the scrapping incentive is to promote the purchase of low-emission passenger vehicles and the renewal of the vehicle fleet. I am glad that the number of development projects to be carried out during this electoral term will go up. We support the Government's competitiveness, growth and climate objectives," Minister of Transport and Communications Anne Berner says.
The following projects will be initiated in 2018: the Ring Road I at Laajalahti, park & ride arrangements on the Western Metro extension, the improvement of the Vuosaari and Kokkola fairways, and replacement of the Hailuoto ferry connection by a bridge. As proposed earlier, EUR 5 million will be allocated for improving the transport connections at the Äänekoski bioproduct mill.
The total budget for improving the Kokkola fairway is EUR 45 million. The intention is to share the project costs between the state and the city. The division of costs will be specified in the next stages of the project. The project aims to improve the transport economy of goods passing through the port of Kokkola.
The Government has decided to improve the transport connections between Hailuoto and the mainland. The Hailuoto bridge project will be carried out under the public-private partnership scheme. It will start in 2018.
"The PPP scheme to be used in the project is economically the most advantageous solution. In addition to the investment, the project includes maintenance services during the term of the contract. By time-adjusting the investment funding over a longer period of time the effects of the investment and the operating costs in government finances can be assessed," says Minister Berner.
"I am pleased that we are making progress toward our goal of deepening three fairways. There is now funding for the Vuosaari and Kokkola projects. Deepening the fairway at the port of Oulu already received funding in the supplementary budget for 2017. This improves the flow of goods transport and, through that, foreign trade of the entire country," Minister Berner says.
A total of EUR 1.4 billion will be allocated to basic transport infrastructure maintenance. EUR 453 million of this appropriation will be allocated to reducing the repair debt in Government's key strategic projects.
The Ministry will also prepare one or two extensive transport network projects so that decisions concerning them can be made in the government discussion on spending limits in spring 2018. It is the intention that the projects will be launched during the current electoral term.
In the government session on spending limits in spring 2017 a decision was made to invest EUR 100 million in the Government's Energy and Climate Strategy measures in 2018-2021. The implementation of the strategy will be promoted by an annual allocation of EUR 6 million to support the acquisition of vehicles that operate solely on electricity and the conversion of gas and flexifuel vehicles. An annual allocation of EUR 4 million will be used equitably across the regions to promote the construction of a recharging and distribution network and the process of electrification for logistics in built-up areas. Public passenger transport in urban regions will be supported by EUR 4 million annually. An annual sum of EUR 2 million will be allocated to increase contractual rail transport services.
A total of EUR 2 million will be allocated to increasing the reliability and information security of the digital society.
For the operational expenses of the Finnish Meteorological Institute an allocation of EUR 1 million will be made to expand the radar network and EUR 0.75 million to fund the Aerosol, Clouds and Trace gases Research Infrastructure (ACTRIS).
To support the diversity of news services an allocation of EUR 2 million will be reserved to pay discretionary government transfers in 2018 for operators holding a programme licence for a public interest TV channel providing news and current affairs.
The budget proposal will be published in mid-September after it has been considered by the Government.
Interviews with Minister Anne Berner:
Taina Pieski, Communications Director, tel. + 358 50 535 1574
repair debt, infrastructure projects and low-emission transport:
Mikael Nyberg, Director-General, tel. + 358 40 837 8794
support for news and current affairs on television channels serving the public interest:
Olli-Pekka Rantala, Director-General, tel. +358 50 344 3400
Laura Vilkkonen, Director-General, tel. + 358 40 500 0817
Finnish Meteorological Institute, and the entire budget proposal:
Juhapekka Ristola, Director-General, tel. + 358 40 078 8530