The Finnish Commerce Federation has published its objectives for the 2023–2027 parliamentary term. The actions promoted by commerce support the success of an industry that employs 291,000 professionals amid increasing international competition, as well as regional vitality and well-being around Finland.
“In order for Finland to develop into a modern service-based society and compete successfully in international markets, we must boldly take measures to restructure society, develop the service sector and understand consumers,” says Mari Kiviniemi, Managing Director of the Finnish Commerce Federation.
Moderate taxation and bold employment reforms – stronger purchasing power
The Finnish Commerce Federation emphasises structural reforms that will strengthen the purchasing power of Finnish people. Consumer purchasing power creates the conditions for economic growth and green choices, and strengthens participation in the economy. Consumer purchasing power must be safeguarded by reducing labour taxation.
Structural reforms are also needed in the labour market. The change in consumer behaviour has dramatically changed the operation and tasks of commerce. Commerce operates 24/7 and competes with international online stores. Labour legislation must identify the changes that have taken place and support the development of working life.
“In order to dismantle incentive traps, we need to reconcile social and unemployment security and service charges with taxation. Accepting a job should always be profitable and predictable without the fear of losing benefits,” Kiviniemi continues.
Fair competition and regulation that enables growth
Regulation must support the development of sectors and respond to changes in consumer behaviour. It is also important that national regulations are in line with those of competing countries. Commerce wants to be available where customers are and aims to meet the requirements of the changing operating environment.
In the future, we need to develop an operating environment that supports investments, as well as smoothness and predictability in planning. The Finnish Commerce Federation also proposes reforms to the regulation of pharmacies and alcohol.
“An ageing Finland requires bringing pharmaceutical services closer to consumers without compromising the safety of medicinal products. Medicine must also be increasingly available and affordable,” Kiviniemi says.
Energy and climate policy in support of green choices
Commerce plays an important role in achieving a carbon neutral Finland and sustainable development goals. The industry’s journey towards achieving carbon neutrality by 2035 would be accelerated by a more moderate electricity tax for the service sector.
“The electricity tax the commerce sector pays is over 40 times more expensive than that of the industrial sector. Returning the electricity tax of the service sector to the same level with industry would encourage investments that reduce the carbon footprint,” Kiviniemi says.
Finnish commerce has faced new challenges and intensifying international competition for a long time, much like industry. This is a clear reason for returning the electricity taxation of the commerce sector to the same level with industry.
Mari Kiviniemi, Managing Director, Finnish Commerce Federation, +358 (0)50 511 3189, mari.kiviniemi(at)kauppa.fi
Tutustu tavoitteisiin täällä.
Menestyvä kauppa, kilpailukykyinen Suomi - Uudistuksilla parempia palveluita ja elinvoimaa