National Transport System Plan: Towards an achievable, sustainable and efficient transport system

Ministry of Transport and Communications
Publication date 15.4.2021 13.39
Press release
Minister of Transport and Communications Timo Harakka (Photo: LVM, VNK/Laura Kotilainen)
Minister of Transport and Communications Timo Harakka (Photo: LVM, VNK/Laura Kotilainen)

The Government adopted the National Transport System Plan for 2021-2032 and submitted it in the form of a report to Parliament on 15 April 2021.

The National Transport System Plan aims to add a longer-term perspective to development of the transport system throughout Finland. The plan was now drawn up for the first time and has been prepared interactively with stakeholders, under the leadership of a parliamentary steering group. The abundant feedback received during the consultation process was taken into account in finalising the plan.

The objective is that the transport system guarantees accessibility to all parts of Finland and responds to the needs of industries, commuting and housing. People should be able to choose more sustainable modes of mobility, especially in urban areas. In addition, the aim is to improve the socio-economic efficiency of the transport system.

Minister Harakka: Together towards common goals

"We are now making history. Finland's first 12-year transport system plan provides long-term guidance for road and rail investments, maintenance and the development of all modes of transport. Planning that is proactive for a decade and knowledge-based decision-making will help to achieve more in a more efficient and sustainable manner with the same money," says Minister of Transport and Communications Timo Harakka.

"I would like to warmly thank the parliamentary parties, both the Government and the opposition, who have worked together responsibly to create a common vision for the future. Hundreds of actors around Finland have made valuable contributions. Interaction will also continue in the implementation and in the launch of the next plan when the time comes," says Minister Harakka.

What is the National Transport System Plan?

- A strategic plan for long-term development of the entire transport system

- The plan is drawn up for 12 years and is updated periodically, every four years

- The plan encompasses all transport modes, passenger and goods transport, transport networks, services and cross-cutting themes of the transport system

- The plan includes an action plan and a central government funding programme

- The plan brings together the measures taken by central and local government.

- Preparation is based on the Highways Act

- Impact assessments are an essential part of the planning

- The plan will make decision-making concerning transport more knowledge-based

How is the transport system financed?

The central government will continue to be responsible for financing the state's transport infrastructure.

Pivotal to the financing of the route network is raising the level of funding for basic route operation. In addition, operational approaches are reformed so that EU funding can be used in full.

In the financing of the transport infrastructure, more emphasis is shifted to the railways. This is due to the fact that the rail network, especially towards the end of the decade, will be in great need of renovation. Another factor contributing to this is the wish to make use of EU funding that focuses specifically on the rail network.

However, the share of the road network in maintaining the basic route operation will remain higher than that of the rail network, and the repair deficit will be reduced for the entire route network, including the lower road network. The level of funding for the road network will continue to be higher than for the rail network.

The first National Transport System Plan has been prepared in accordance with the general government finance plan for 2021-2024 and the budget decisions for 2021-2024. For 2025-2032, the plan proposes increases in the financing of the transport system. The costs presented in the plan are estimates, and their implementation will depend on future budget decisions.

Next steps

Parliament takes a position on the National Transport System Plan.

Implementation of the National Transport System Plan begins. A stakeholder event on implementation is held during spring 2021.

Based on the National Transport System Plan and the strategic situational picture of the transport network, the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency draws up an investment programme for the state transport infrastructure networks for the next 6-8 years. Drawn up for the first time in 2021, the investment programme is then used in preparing budget proposals.

Preparatory material gathered together in the Gateway to Information on Government Projects

Preparatory material for the project is available in the Gateway to Information on Government Projects, where a memorandum published by the Ministry of Transport and Communications on 15 April deals with how feedback has been taken into account in finalising the plan and impact assessments. A publication on impact assessments has also been published.


Minister of Transport and Communications Timo Harakka, requests for interviews: Susanna Niinivaara, Communications Director, tel. +358 400 816 187

Ilkka Hamunen, Special Adviser to the Minister, tel. +358 50 478 1027, Twitter @Ilkka_H

Timo Kievari, Director of Unit, tel. +358 400 593 706, Twitter @TimoKievari