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National Implementation of 2030 Agenda for SD




Finland has a long tradition in promoting sustainable development both in domestic policies and in international development cooperation. Therefore, Finland is in a good position to start implementing the global 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Agenda 2030). However, the comprehensive and integrative nature of the new Agenda 2030 calls for better coherence and coordination of various policies also in Finland.


For Finland, because of the nature of the universal and transformative Agenda 2030 and its Sustainable Development Goals and targets, a careful review of the country’s development cooperation policies and practices is needed, and just as importantly, a review of domestic policies and measures in various sectors, as well. When it comes to domestic action, Finland needs to work on goals and targets for biological diversity, citizens’ wellbeing and equality, sustainable consumption and production, efficient energy use, renewable energy, and climate change mitigation and adaptation policies, for example. On the other hand, eradicating poverty, ensuring global food security or promoting peaceful and inclusive societies are goals which Finland implements best by intensifying its development and foreign policies. The division between domestic and foreign action is not, however, always so rigid; for instance, Finland’s consumption and production patterns have an impact also outside the national borders through materials and supply chains.


Preparation of the National Implementation Plan for Agenda 2030

The Finnish Government has the primary responsibility for the national implementation of Agenda 2030, but, in the spirit of the global agenda, the civil society, the private sector and other stakeholders have an integral role in this endeavour. According to the Government Programme of Prime Minister Juha Sipilä, a National Implementation Plan for Agenda 2030 will be drawn up by the end of 2016. Finland’s development policy — an important part of Finland's national response to the new agenda — has been outlined in the Government Report on Development Policy, published in February 2016.


Finland is getting ready to implement Agenda 2030 in ways that are comprehensive and inclusive. The Prime Minister’s Office is in charge of coordinating the national implementation. The Office also acts as the Coordination Secretariat, which includes representatives from the Prime Minister’s Office, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the National Commission on Sustainable Development. The Coordination Secretariat works closely together with the Coordination Network, comprising all government ministries.


To guide the preparation of the National Implementation Plan for Agenda 2030, an external gap analysis will be conducted to look into Finland’s readiness to implement the global 2030 Agenda. The objective is to draw a baseline for Finland’s implementation measures, and in particular, to point out those goals and targets where Finland has to take the most actions to catch up. The analysis will also enable the appropriate scheduling of activities and allocation of resources for issues that are most relevant to Finland. The gap analysis is being carried out by the Finnish Environment Institute and Demos Helsinki, a think tank, and it should be completed by July 2016.


The National Implementation Plan will outline, among other things, how Finland will integrate the principles, goals and targets of Agenda 2030 into various policy sectors and into international cooperation, and how the progress in the implementation will be monitored and reviewed. It will also identify Finland’s strengths, as well as major gaps and challenges, and offer solutions and tools for improving the implementation. The key measures for putting Agenda 2030 into practice are the integrated policies and measures taken in various Government sectors, as part of the implementation of national and EU legislation, national sectoral or thematic strategies and action plans, as well as international agreements and commitments. One important voluntary means of implementation in Finland is Society’s Commitment to Sustainable Development, the national sustainable development strategy adopted in 2013. An important policy instrument for implementation is the Government Report on Development Policy.


The mechanisms to strengthen multi-stakeholder engagement and partnerships

State officials are responsible for drawing up the implementation plan and facilitating the implementation of Agenda 2030 in Finland. However, there are two major multi-stakeholder committees in Finland that support and promote sustainable development policies. The Development Policy Committee is a parliamentary body whose mission is to follow the implementation of the global sustainable development agenda in Finland from the development policy perspective and to monitor the implementation of the Government Programme and the Government's development policy guidelines. The National Commission on Sustainable Development is a Prime Minister-led partnership forum that has operated in Finland for 23 years without interruption with the aim of integrating sustainable development into Finnish policies, measures and everyday practices. The membership of both committees includes a broad spectrum of non-governmental stakeholders, private sector actors, interest groups and civil society organisations. In addition, the Sustainable Development Expert Panel, comprising eminent professors from different disciplines, challenges and enhances the work of the National Commission on Sustainable Development and adds a critical voice in the sustainability debate, when needed.


Both committees’ mandates were renewed at the beginning of 2016 for the next four years. The secretariat of the Development Policy Committee is located in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The coordination of the work of the National Commission on Sustainable Development was transferred from the Ministry of the Environment to the Prime Minister’s Office in January 2016, but the Secretary General of the National Commission continues to work from the Environment Ministry. In order to improve the policy coherence, the collaboration between the two committees will be intensified, for example through joint meetings, workshops and discussion papers.


The Finland we want by 2050 — Society’s Commitment to Sustainable Development was finalised in 2013 and it will feature as one of the key multi-stakeholder implementation tools for Agenda 2030 in Finland. It provides the framework for a strategic approach to sustainable development and it sets out a vision, principles and objectives for the transition to a sustainable society. Compared to conventional national sustainability strategies, Society’s Commitment can be seen as a social innovation enabling the integration of sustainable development into everyday practices and the engagement of a broad spectrum of societal actors in joint efforts. Society’s Commitment also contains an implementation mechanism. By the end of 2015, over 200 organisations from companies to ministries, educational institutions, municipalities and civil society organisations, as well as individuals had already joined Society’s Commitment by launching their own operational commitments. In this way they are contributing to the achievement of sustainable development in Finland through their own efforts. Society’s Commitment was updated in April 2016 to be in line with Agenda 2030.


Monitoring, accountability and review

Finland is committed to providing a systematic, open, transparent, inclusive and participatory follow-up to and review of the implementation of Agenda 2030 and its Sustainable Development Goals and targets at all levels. Monitoring the progress and reviewing the achievements on a regular basis is essential for ensuring accountability to the Finnish society and the global community.


The state of and trends in sustainable development in Finland are being monitored and reviewed with the use of 39 national sustainable development indicators. These indicators were identified in 2014 to measure the progress of the eight strategic objectives of Society’s Commitment. They will be revised and updated to lend themselves to the follow-up to Agenda 2030 and thus will complement the global sustainable development indicators. The work on the indicators will be part of the national monitoring and review scheme for the implementation of Agenda 2030.


The Government of Finland recognises the need to strengthen the accountability to and dialogue with Parliament, various stakeholders and the general public when implementing Agenda 2030 and when preparing the National Implementation Plan. Finland is committed to intensifying the existing means and finding new ways to increase participation and ownership. As regards Parliament, one effective means might be a Government report to Parliament on the national implementation of Agenda 2030. For the society at large, a regional Agenda 2030 road show is one way to reach all corners of Finland. New modes of participation will be considered during the preparatory process for the National Implementation Plan for Agenda 2030 in the course of 2016.


A national report on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development , Finland


Further information:

Government of Finland

- Ms Annika Lindblom:

- Mr Sami Pirkkala:

- Ms Marja Innanen:



Leading Ministry and
respective unit


The Prime Minister’s Office coordinates the Agenda 2030 implementation

Other ministries involved


All ministries are involved in planning and implementing Agenda 2030

Main contact point for the
implementation process


Prime Minister’s Office (

Links to main websites/
documents on national
implementation of the
2030 Agenda and SDGs

Under construction


Voluntary National Reviews


This Country Profile has been last updated on: Monday, 04 July 2016

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