Relevant authorities in Finland

Finland has an authority explicitly responsible for genetic engineering, as well as an advisory board working on ethical questions.

In Finland, the Minister for Agriculture is responsible for co-existence regulations.
In Finland, the Minister for Agriculture is responsible for co-existence regulations.
Regulatory bodies

In Finland, the Ministry for Agriculture and Forestry is responsible for establishing and implementing co-existence measures.

The competent authority responsible for implementing this legislation and the related notification procedures is the Board for Gene Technology. The Board for Gene Technology is constituted by the Gene Technology Act (No.377/1995). In addition to being a national authority in Finland, the board functions as a competent authority towards the European Community. It processes notifications concerning the use and release of genetically modified organisms as defined by directives 90/219/EEC, its amendment 98/81/EEC and 2001/18/EC, and responds to them within its authority to make legally binding decisions.

The Board aims to promote the safe and ethically acceptable application of genetic engineering and to prevent any dangers to human health, animals, property, or the environment. Its priorities include processing notifications, issuing instructions and regulations, acting as a registration authority, preparing opinions and recommendations, monitoring, restricting or prohibiting the use of potentially dangerous organisms, and imposing administrative sanctions to enforce its provisions.

The board consists of a chairman, a vice chairman and five members who represent the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, and the Ministry of the Environment. An expert in ethics shall also be present on the board. The board members are appointed for five years by the Council of State.

Advisory panels

The National Advisory Board for Biotechnology (BTNK) provides policy advice across a wide range of “bioethics” topics, but also on co-existence. It belongs to the Finnish National Public Health Institute.


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