maakunta (Finnish)
landskap (Swedish)
CategoryUnitary state
Populations30,344 (Åland) — 1,714,741 (Uusimaa)
Areas1,553 km2 (Åland) — 92,674 km2 (Lapland)
  • Regional council

Finland is divided into 19 regions (Finnish: maakunta; Swedish: landskap)[a] which are governed by regional councils that serve as forums of cooperation for the municipalities of each region. The councils are composed of delegates from the municipal councils. The main tasks of regional councils are regional planning, the development of enterprises, and education. Between 2004 and 2012, the regional council of Kainuu was elected via popular elections as part of an experimental regional administration.[2]

In 2022, new Wellbeing services counties were established as part of a health care and social services reform. The wellbeing services counties follow the regional borders, and are governed by directly elected county councils.[3]


One region, Åland, has a special status and has a much higher degree of autonomy than the others, with its own Parliament and local laws, due to its unique history and the fact that the overwhelming majority of its people are Finland Swedes. The sole language of Åland is Swedish/Finland Swedish, unlike the rest of the country where Finnish and Swedish share official status. It has its own elected head of government who carries the title of Premier and heads the Lantråd, the regional executive. Most powers that would be exercised by the Government of Finland on the mainland are instead exercised by Åland-specific authorities which execute independent policy in most areas. The Åland islanders elect a single representative to the national legislature, while the Government of Finland appoints a Governor to represent the national government on Åland. Åland is a demilitarized zone and Åland islanders are exempt from conscription.

Representation of the state

In addition to inter-municipal cooperation, which is the responsibility of regional councils, there are 15 Centres for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment (Finnish: elinkeino-, liikenne- ja ympäristökeskus, abbreviated ely-keskus), which are responsible for the local administration of labour, agriculture, fisheries, forestry and entrepreneurial affairs. They are each responsible for one or more of regions of Finland, and include offices of the Ministries of Employment and the Economy, Transport and Communications and Environment. The Finnish Defence Forces regional offices are responsible for the regional defence preparations and for the administration of conscription within the region.

List of regions

Lapland (Finland) Lapland
Northern Ostrobothnia North Ostrobothnia
 North Karelia
Northern Savonia North Savo
Southern Savonia South Savo
Southern Ostrobothnia South Ostrobothnia
Ostrobothnia (region) Ostrobothnia
 Central Ostrobothnia
 Central Finland
Finland Proper Southwest Finland
Tavastia Proper Kanta-Häme
Päijänne Tavastia Päijät-Häme
 South Karelia
Flag Coat of arms English name[4] Finnish name Swedish name ISO Capital Area
Lapland Lapland Lappi Lappland FI-10 Rovaniemi 92,674 176,494
North Ostrobothnia North Ostrobothnia Pohjois-Pohjanmaa Norra Österbotten FI-14 Oulu 36,815 415,603
Kainuu Kainuu Kainuu Kainuu Kajanaland FI-05 Kajaani 20,197 71,255
North Karelia North Karelia North Karelia Pohjois-Karjala Norra Karelen FI-13 Joensuu 17,761 163,281
North Savonia North Savonia North Savo Pohjois-Savo Norra Savolax FI-15 Kuopio 16,768 248,363
Etelä-Savo South Savo Etelä-Savo Södra Savolax FI-04 Mikkeli 14,257 131,688
South Karelia South Karelia Etelä-Karjala Södra Karelen FI-02 Lappeenranta 5,327 126,107
Central Finland Central Finland Central Finland Keski-Suomi Mellersta Finland FI-08 Jyväskylä 16,703 272,683
South Ostrobothnia South Ostrobothnia South Ostrobothnia Etelä-Pohjanmaa Södra Österbotten FI-03 Seinäjoki 13,444 191,762
Ostrobothnia Ostrobothnia Pohjanmaa Österbotten FI-12 Vaasa 7,753 176,041
Central Ostrobothnia Central Ostrobothnia Central Ostrobothnia Keski-Pohjanmaa Mellersta Österbotten FI-07 Kokkola 5,020 67,915
Pirkanmaa Pirkanmaa Pirkanmaa Birkaland FI-11 Tampere 12,585 527,478
Satakunta Satakunta Satakunta Satakunta Satakunta FI-17 Pori 7,820 214,281
Päijät-Häme Päijät-Häme Päijät-Häme Päijät-Häme Päijänne-Tavastland FI-16 Lahti 5,125 205,124
Kanta-Häme Kanta-Häme Kanta-Häme Kanta-Häme Egentliga Tavastland FI-06 Hämeenlinna 5,199 170,213
Kymenlaakso Kymenlaakso Kymenlaakso Kymmenedalen FI-09 Kotka and Kouvola[b] 5,149 161,391
Uusimaa Uusimaa Uusimaa Uusimaa Nyland FI-18 Helsinki 9,097 1,714,741
Southwest Finland Southwest Finland Varsinais-Suomi Egentliga Finland FI-19 Turku 10,663 483,477
Åland Åland Åland Ahvenanmaa Åland AX and
Mariehamn 1,553 30,344

Former region

Regions of Finland in 2000.
Coat of arms Name Official English name[6] Finnish name Swedish name Capital Dissolution (date)
Eastern Uusimaa Itä-Uusimaa Itä-Uusimaa[7] Östra Nyland Porvoo 1 January 2011

Regional border changes

Border changes between the regions:[8]










See also


  1. ^ Northern Sami: eanangoddi, Inari Sami: eennâmkodde, and Skolt Sami: mäddkåʹdd.[1]
  2. ^ Kymenlaakso is the only region with two capitals, of which Kotka is the official regional centre and Kouvola is the administrative one.


  1. ^ "Sátnegirjjit, Dictionaries of Finnish, Swedish, the Sami Languages, English and Russian". Archived from the original on 18 February 2019. Retrieved 21 February 2019.
  2. ^ "Historiallinen maakuntahallinto opetti valtiota". Yle uutiset. 17 December 2012. Archived from the original on 10 December 2017. Retrieved 22 May 2021.
  3. ^ "Health and social services reform". Finnish Government. Archived from the original on 16 May 2021. Retrieved 22 May 2021.
  4. ^ "Suomen hallintorakenteeseen ja maakuntauudistukseen liittyviä termejä sekä maakuntien ja kuntien nimet fi-sv-en-(ru)" (PDF). pp. 8–9. Archived (PDF) from the original on 11 June 2022. Retrieved 23 August 2019.
  5. ^ "Municipal key figures / With the 2021 regional division / Municipal key figures". Statistics Finland. Archived from the original on 13 August 2023. Retrieved 19 August 2023.
  6. ^ "Regions of Finland 2010". Statistics Finland. Archived from the original on 29 September 2018. Retrieved 21 February 2019.
  7. ^ "Valtioneuvosto päätti Uudenmaan ja Itä-Uudenmaan maakuntien yhdistämisestä" (in Finnish). Ministry of Finance. October 22, 2009. Archived from the original on August 7, 2011. Retrieved December 30, 2010.
  8. ^ "Statistics Finland". Archived from the original on 2022-08-07. Retrieved 2022-07-04.