Which maritime spatial plans exist?

The first Finnish maritime spatial plan was approved in December 2020. It was prepared in three parts covering both territorial waters and the EEZ. These are the Northern Bothnian Sea, Quark and Bothnian Bay drafted by the Regional Councils of Lapland, Oulu region, Central Ostrobothnia and Ostrobothnia; the Archipelago sea and Southern Bothnian Sea drafted by the Regional Councils of Satakunta and Southwest Finland; and the Gulf of Finland drafted by the Regional Councils of Helsinki-Uusimaa and Kymenlaakso.

An MSP Plan for the Åland Island is developed according to its own maritime spatial planning legislation as Åland Island is an autonomous region of Finland.

MSP legislation

The Maritime Spatial Planning Directive was transposed into Finnish law in 2016. MSP regulations are covered by the Land Use and Building Act, which is the most important act to steer land-use, spatial planning and construction. Nonetheless, maritime spatial planning is not part of the land-use planning system or land use plan hierarchy of Finland. Maritime spatial plans are strategic and general, non-binding plans that have indirect steering impacts.

Eight Coastal Regional Councils are responsible for drafting and approving maritime spatial plans in the territorial waters and on the EEZ. The Ministry of the Environment is responsible for developing maritime spatial planning and of cooperation with other countries.

MSP Website

National MSP authority

Finnish Ministry of the Environment
Department of the Built Environment
Aleksanterinkatu 7
P.O. Box 35, FI-00023 Government, Finland
Phone: +358 29 5250296
Tiina Tihlman: Ministerial Adviser

Last Update 07.07.2022