Public procurement

The annual public procurement expenditure in Finland is roughly 30 billion euros, approximately 20% of the country’s gross domestic product. The municipal sector is responsible for 75% of this expenditure. Decisions regarding public procurement have a significant impact on the environmental effects of products and services. Smart decisions promote the use of material-efficient and sustainable solutions, prevent the generation of waste and support employment in the cleantech sector.


The largest percentage of public sector investments goes towards construction, amounting to over 5 billion euros annually. The majority of these investments are made by municipalities and joint municipal authorities. Public sector construction accounts for approximately 10 per cent of all construction projects. The main objectives in this field include improving energy efficiency, utilising renewable energy, achieving material efficiency and sustaining a healthy and functioning environment.


Procurement processes and investments related to traffic and transport amount to about 4 billion euros a year, half of which is spent on constructing, managing and maintaining the transport network, with the Finnish Transport Agency and the Centres for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment playing a major role. Procurement of public transport is mainly done by cities, and these services are either acquired by awarding transport contracts to private service providers through tendering or provided as part of a city’s own services. Furthermore, the majority of supported transport services are acquired through public tendering processes.

Food and catering

The public procurement volume of food and catering services is about a billion euros a year. Catering accounts for two thirds of this number (roughly 650 million euros), while one third of the sum is spent on food (roughly 350 million euros).

Food and catering service procurement takes place in all administrative sectors and government agencies, as well as at most schools, day care centres, hospitals and services provided for the elderly, disabled and people with long-term illnesses.

Procurement support

  • The KEINO Competence Centre provides aid and support to those responsible for public procurement in developing sustainable and innovative procurement processes.
  • Motiva’s procurement service provides support in public procurement. It produces procurement criteria and instructions and gives advice and consultation aid.
  • The Circwaste project’s Circular Economy Service Centre provides support with sustainable public procurement.
  • The Swan is a Nordic ecolabel, which takes into account the environmental impacts of products throughout their lifespan and steers consumption towards sustainable choices.

More information

  • Senior Researcher Katriina Alhola, Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE),
  • Project Manager Hannamaria Yliruusi, Turku University of Applied Sciences,
  • Project Advisor Sonja Lankiniemi, Turku University of Applied Sciences,
  • Planner Milla Popova, Turku University of Applied Sciences,
Published 2019-10-17 at 12:37, updated 2021-04-21 at 13:37
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