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    Finland Economy - 1991

      Overview: Finland has a highly industrialized, largely free market economy, with per capita output nearly three-fourths the US figure. Its main economic force is the manufacturing sector--principally the wood, metals, and engineering industries. Trade is important, with the export of goods representing about 30% of GDP. Except for timber and several minerals, Finland depends on imported raw materials, energy, and some components of manufactured goods. Because of the climate, agricultural development is limited to maintaining self-sufficiency in basic commodities. The economy, which experienced an average of 4.9% annual growth between 1987 and 1989, leveled off in 1990 and is now in a recession facing negative growth in 1991. The clearing account system between Finland and the Soviet Union in the postwar period--mainly Soviet oil and gas for Finnish manufactured goods--had kept Finland isolated from world recessions; the system, however, was dismantled on 1 January 1991 in favor of hard currency trade. As a result, Finland must increase its competitiveness in certain sectors, for example, textiles, foodstuffs, paper, and metals, and has already begun to shift trade westward. Finland, as a member of EFTA, is negotiating a European Economic Area arrangement with the EC which would allow for free movement of capital, goods, services, and labor within the organization.

      GDP: $77.3 billion, per capita $15,500; real growth rate - 0.1% (1990)

      Inflation rate (consumer prices): 5.0% (1991 est.)

      Unemployment rate: 5.7% (1991 est.)

      Budget: revenues $35.1 billion; expenditures $33.1 billion, including capital expenditures of $1.4 billion (1990)

      Exports: $23.3 billion (f.o.b., 1989); commodities--timber, paper and pulp, ships, machinery, clothing and footwear; partners--EC 44.0% (UK 12.0%, FRG 10.8%), USSR 14.5%, Sweden 14.3%, US 6.4%

      Imports: $24.4 billion (c.i.f., 1989); commodities--foodstuffs, petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, transport equipment, iron and steel, machinery, textile yarn and fabrics, fodder grains; partners--EC 44.5% (FRG 17.3%, UK 6.6%), Sweden 13.6%, USSR 11.5%, US 6.3%

      External debt: $5.3 billion (1989)

      Industrial production: growth rate - 3.0% (1991 est.); accounts for 28% of GDP

      Electricity: 13,324,000 kW capacity; 49,330 million kWh produced, 9,940 kWh per capita (1989)

      Industries: metal manufacturing and shipbuilding, forestry and wood processing (pulp, paper), copper refining, foodstuffs, chemicals, textiles, clothing

      Agriculture: accounts for 8% of GNP (including forestry); livestock production, especially dairy cattle, predominates; forestry is an important export earner and a secondary occupation for the rural population; main crops--cereals, sugar beets, potatoes; 85% self-sufficient, but short of food and fodder grains; annual fish catch about 160,000 metric tons

      Economic aid: donor--ODA and OOF commitments (1970-89), $2.7 billion

      Currency: markka (plural--markkaa); 1 markka (FMk) or Finmark = 100 pennia

      Exchange rates: markkaa (FMk) per US$1--3.6421 (January 1991), 3.8235 (1990), 4.2912 (1989), 4.1828 (1988), 4.3956 (1987), 5.0695 (1986), 6.1979 (1985)

      Fiscal year: calendar year

      NOTE: The information regarding Finland on this page is re-published from the 1991 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Finland Economy 1991 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Finland Economy 1991 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 08-Feb-03
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