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Published: 19 December 2019

Swedish enterprises generated turnover especially in manufacturing

According to Statistics Finland's data, foreign enterprises located in Finland generated EUR 96 billion in turnover in 2018. This was four per cent more than in the previous year. Most turnover was generated by enterprises from Sweden, the United States, Germany, the United Kingdom and Denmark. Swedish enterprises accounted for 22.1 per cent of the turnover of foreign enterprises located in Finland. The industry of manufacturing was most significant in terms of both number of persons employed and turnover. The number of foreign enterprises increased slightly, to 4,382.

Turnover of foreign enterprises in 2018 by industry (excl. A Agriculture, forestry and fishing)*

Turnover of foreign enterprises in 2018 by industry (excl. A Agriculture, forestry and fishing)*
*five most significant countries measured by turnover

Foreign enterprises employ nearly 17.8 per cent of the personnel of enterprises operating in Finland (Appendix figure 1). The share increased slightly from the year before. The share of turnover went up slightly to 22.8 per cent of the turnover of enterprises operating in Finland. However, the shares vary considerably by industry. In the main industries, the shares of turnover and personnel vary from 0.1 to 39 per cent.

Relative to the total enterprise stock, foreign enterprises in Finland generating most turnover represented the industries of information and communication, and mining and quarrying. While foreign enterprises in the industries of human health and social work activities, and information and communication employed most people relative to the total enterprise stock (Appendix figure 2). The picture is slightly different if we look at the number of personnel and turnover instead of the shares. Measured in this way, the most significant industries are manufacturing, and wholesale trade and retail trade. Manufacturing employed 75,200 persons, or 28 per cent of employees in foreign enterprises and its turnover was EUR 32 billion. Wholesale and retail trade employed 48,500 persons and its turnover amounted to EUR 32 billion (Appendix figure 3).

The nationality of an enterprise is recorded based on the institutional unit that controls it. Usually this is an enterprise located abroad that owns over 50 per cent of the enterprise, either directly or indirectly. Swedish enterprises clearly own the largest share of the affiliates located in Finland. Swedish enterprises also employ most among foreign affiliates, 77,000 persons, which was around eight per cent fewer than in the year before. Also measured by turnover, Swedish enterprises are most noteworthy with EUR 21 billion. Four per cent growth in turnover was very modest compared to 2017. (Appendix figure 4).

The statistics have been renewed

Statistics Finland has renewed its production of business statistics. The data of the statistics on foreign affiliates in Finland for 2018 are not fully comparable with the data for previous years. The data are published based on enterprise units instead of legal units (Business ID) as before. These data are available for the first time for the statistical reference year 2018.

The enterprise unit aims at describing economic entities instead of administrative structures. One or several enterprise units can be formed from the group’s legal units (Business ID). For enterprises not belonging to groups, the enterprise unit always corresponds with the legal unit. The enterprise unit corresponds with the smallest combination of legal units that forms an independent production unit benefiting from autonomy in decision-making. Internal transactions within the enterprise unit are eliminated, so industry-specific data differ from data based on legal units (Business ID).

Tieto & trendit: Yritysyksikön käyttöönotto helpottaa tilastojen tulkintaa (Introduction of the enterprise unit makes interpretation of statistics easier) (only in Finnish)

Source: Foreign affiliates in Finland 2018, Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Anna-Maija Laakko 029 551 3640,

Director in charge: Mari Ylä-Jarkko

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Appendix tables


Updated 19.12.2019

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Foreign affiliates in Finland [e-publication].
ISSN=2242-2552. 2018. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 1.2.2023].
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