Finland 1999 Constitution (reviewed 2011)

Table of Contents

Chapter 11. Administration and self-government

Section 119. State administration

In addition to the Government and the Ministries, the central administration of the State may consist of agencies, institutions and other bodies. The State may also have regional and local public authorities. More detailed provisions on the administration subordinate to the Parliament are laid down by an Act.

The general principles governing the bodies of State administration shall be laid down by an Act, if their duties involve the exercise of public powers. The principles governing the regional and local authorities of the State shall likewise be governed by an Act. In other respects, provisions on the entities of State administration may be laid down by a Decree.

Section 120. Special Status of the Åland Islands

The Åland Islands have self-government in accordance with what is specifically stipulated in the Act on the Autonomy of the Åland Islands.

Section 121. Municipal and other regional self-government

Finland is divided into municipalities, whose administration shall be based on the self-government of their residents. Provisions on the general principles governing municipal administration and the duties of the municipalities are laid down by an Act.

The municipalities have the right to levy municipal tax. Provisions on the general principles governing tax liability and the grounds for the tax as well as on the legal remedies available to the persons or entities liable to taxation are laid down by an Act.

Provisions on self-government in administrative areas larger than a municipality are laid down by an Act. In their native region, the Sami have linguistic and cultural self-government, as provided by an Act.

Section 122. Administrative divisions

In the organisation of administration, the objective shall be suitable territorial divisions, so that the Finnish-speaking and Swedish-speaking populations have an opportunity to receive services in their own language on equal terms.

The principles governing the municipal divisions are laid down by an Act.

Section 123. Universities and other education providers

The universities are self-governing, as provided in more detail by an Act.

Provisions on the principles governing the other educational services arranged by the State and the municipalities, as well as on the right to arrange corresponding education in private educational institutions, are laid down by an Act.

Section 124. Delegation of administrative tasks to others than the authorities

A public administrative task may be delegated to others than public authorities only by an Act or by virtue of an Act, if this is necessary for the appropriate performance of the task and if basic rights and liberties, legal remedies and other requirements of good governance are not endangered. However, a task involving significant exercise of public powers can only be delegated to public authorities.

Section 125. General qualifications for public office and other grounds for appointment

It may be stated in an Act that only Finnish citizens are eligible for appointment to certain public offices or duties.

The general qualifications for public office shall be skill, ability and proven civic merit.

Section 126. Appointment to State offices (1112/2011, entry into force 1.3.2012)

The Government appoints state officials unless the appointment has been designated as a prerogative of the President of the Republic, a Ministry or another public authority.

The President appoints the permanent secretary of the Office of the President of the Republic and the heads of Finnish diplomatic missions abroad.

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