Finland - Country Commercial Guide
5G and 6G Solutions

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country.  Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2021-09-14

5G and 6 G

Overview

Finland is often called “the world’s telecommunications test laboratory.” The advanced nature of the Finnish telecommunications market has led to many services and technologies introducing in Finland much earlier than elsewhere in the world. As a result, many international companies use Finland as a test laboratory for experimental launches of new products and services before going global.

To support these claims, for the second year in a row Finland ranks first in the EU Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI), a metric for digital performance and digital competitiveness. The great performance is credited to excellence in digital public services and the integration of digital technologies, both enabled by public and private sector cooperation and an active start up-scene.

Government support is considered future focused, with the government setting regulatory incentives and funding basic research. Key figures supporting the great digital performance are a 99 percent 4G coverage for households; 154 mobile broadband subscriptions per 100 people; 76 percent of population has basic or above basic digital skills; and a 67 percent 5G readiness, measured as the percentage of assigned harmonized 5G spectrum. Key industry figures for 2019 are 77,000 employees and a revenue of $16.5 billion.

Finnish companies are also quite far into the digital age. Nineteen percent of enterprises utilize big data and 50 percent utilize the cloud. Many Finnish companies are reported to be planning the evaluation of the benefits of 5G technology, automation, and AI.

The Ministry of Transport and Communications is responsible for the operation of transport and communications markets and critical communications networks. The Transport and Communications Agency guides the use of the spectrum.

The Government of Finland is proposing a reform to the Act on Electronic Communications Services. The objectives of the change include the improvement of the consumers’ position, the promotion of both investments into communications networks and the availability of communications services as well as ensuring the security of communication networks better.

Telecommunications operators and their operations are regulated. Regulations concern targeted communications, such as telephone, text message, broadband and email services, and mass communications, such as cable television, IPTV, terrestrial television, and radio services. Detailed information can be found at TrafiCom. For telecommunications services either a license or a notification requirement is required. Finland’s Ministry of Transport and Communications or the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency grant these. 

TrafiCom promotes competition and seeks to reduce entry barriers in all telecommunication markets.

Leading Sub-Sectors

Leading Sub-Sectors are broadband spectrum, fiber optics, and mobile broadband technology.

Opportunities

Finland is a great launchpad to take 5G – and 6G – solutions global. Enabled by the strong network infrastructure and an innovative prospective partner pool, Finland has numerous 5G testbeds available for commercial use ranging from fully isolated 5G infrastructures to actual real-life test ranges. With a recently finished auction for 5G bandwidths, Finland is currently one of the few markets where all the 5G bands; low, mid and high frequency; are available for use. This means Finland has the same mmWave capabilities as the United States, but 5G solutions also have access to the other spectrums currently unavailable in the United States allowing to fully explore the possibilities of 5G-enabled products. Even 6G solutions can already be prototyped in Finland.

The 5G Test Network Finland (5GNTF) project, which consists of around 50 members from industry, academia and the Finnish public sector, offers testing, trial and piloting services, and ample opportunities for collaboration within the ecosystem. With varying focus areas at different sites, 5GTNF can cover a large variety of vertical industry use cases by providing support for high data rates, low latencies, reliable communications, and massive number of devices. 5GTNF is a joint initiative between the Finnish public and private sector. 5G Momentum project is another one open for companies to participate in different trials and projects. To support industry in finalization of 5G there is also a 6G ecosystem, 6G Flagship Program, where opportunities vary from multi-partner projects to tailored company-focused projects.

Finland has three main annual or bi-annual trade shows with heavy focus on ICT. The tradeshows are Teknologia in Helsinki, Slush in Helsinki and Shift in Turku. Due to COVID19 precautions, most shows have been postponed or have virtual activities. Visit the tradeshow websites for the latest information.

Government procurement opportunity listing site depends on the value of the contract. Procurements over the EU threshold are listed on the Tender Electronics Daily. Procurements over a certain threshold are also listed on the national listings site HILMA.

Cybersecurity

Overview

As a high-tech country, Finland has a need for cybersecurity solutions. This is evident by the market size, which a Finnish industry association, AlliedICT, estimates to be valued at EUR 1 billion in 2019 and growing annually. Government awareness and support is also strong, with the National Cyber Security Center (NCSC-FI) coordinating industry-specific working groups to engage private sector companies. NCSC-FI has launched a “cybersecurity mark” that companies can apply for to showcase their products demonstrate good cybersecurity practices.

Leading Sub-Sectors

As the official languages of Finland are Finnish and Swedish, cybersecurity solutions that work with minor languages have an edge. Due to the high-tech nature of the Finnish society, all cybersecurity solutions and components to help build such solutions have a market.

Opportunities

In a recent study conducted by the Helsinki Chamber of Commerce, Safety 2021 (Turvallisuus 2021), a quarter of the respondents had worked in a company that suspected it had been a victim of corporate espionage with over a fifth of verified cases had resulted in losses of over $1,000,000. The study identified 70 percent of companies do not know or have the capability to identify corporate espionage correctly.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Overview

By successfully applying AI, Finland is expected to reach a $24-billion and 8 percent annual boost in GDP by the year 2023. With focused AI-based activities in business net employment is estimated to increase by up to 5 percent

Government support is considered future focused, with the government setting regulatory incentives and funding basic research. Finland is a member of the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking and will host one of the three pre-exascale supercomputers. Finland is also a signatory of the Declaration on European Blockchain Partnership and the Declaration on Cooperation on Artificial Intelligence. The Ministry of Finance has appointed a strategic group to create a plan of the development and management of the national AuroraAI program with a desire to create a test version of the AI network and a further implementation plan between 2019 and 2023.

Finnish companies are quite far into the digital age. Nineteen percent of enterprises utilize big data and 50 percent utilize the cloud. Many Finnish companies are reported to be planning the evaluation of the benefits of 5G technology, automation, and AI.

Leading Sub-Sectors

Finland is a highly sophisticated market for computer hardware and components. Finland has one of the world’s highest numbers of computers per capita connected to the Internet. This environment provides cutting-edge, high efficiency settings for all computer hardware-related businesses. Both consumers and companies alike seek reliable high-end products from trustworthy vendors to use in advanced fields.

This is indicative in U.S. Export statistics, where Computer & Electronic Products was the principal export category in 2020 with a share of 21.8 percent. To satisfy the needs of the high-tech industries, electronic components are in-demand with total imports reaching over $1 billion in 2020. Some 60 percent of all Finnish service imports are ICT related, amounting to around $5.4 billion in 2020.

Opportunities

As a high-tech country, Finland provides plenty of opportunities for the ICT industry. Components are needed to satisfy the needs of local manufacturing and R&D; ICT services, such as SaaS and cloud services, are demanded by the developing eGovernment and SMBs modernizing their operations. With high labor costs and high labor union participation, AI and robotics solutions that help cut costs are expected to grow in demand.

Resources

  • Finnish Center of Artificial Intelligence
  • The Ministry of Transport and Communication.
  • TrafiCom
  • Information

Interested parties may contact Commercial Specialist Tiina Ketelä-Juvonen, tiina.ketela@trade.gov