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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure FI-2022-32/2201 – measures in Finland

Increase in study allowances to mitigate the effects of increased cost of living

Opintotukien korotus vastaten elinkustannusten kasvuun

Country Finland , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 01 August 2022 – 31 July 2023
Context War in Ukraine
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Responses to inflation
– Increasing income in general
Author Amanda Kinnunen (Oxford Research) and Eurofound
Measure added 03 May 2022 (updated 20 June 2022)

Background information

To mitigate the increasing living costs for those most in need of support in society, the government is proposing an additional index-based adjustment resulting in an increase in study allowance in 2022.

The legal framework underlying the social benefits are the the Pension Index Act 456/2001 (Laki kansaneläkeindeksistä), the Student Allowance Act 65/1994 (Opintotukilaki) and the Adult Education Benefits Act 1276/2000 (Laki aikuiskoulutusetuuksista). These laws set the framework for the endowments index adjustments.

Content of measure

As part of the government’s seconds supplementary budget of 2022, the government is proposing an additional index increase in study allowance which is meant to mitigate the effects of increasing living costs for low-income groups. Other social benefits are also proposed to be increased, see related case . In practice this entails a 3.5% increase in each benefit.

For students the applicable allowances covered are the study allowance, the carer's study allowance, the learning materials allowance as well as the adult education allowance.

Based on a preliminary estimate, the increase in endowments adds up to €120 million in government spending as well as reduces tax income by €60 million.

Use of measure

In 2020, there were 320,200 recipients of study allowance in Finland.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers Does not apply to businesses Students

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Social insurance
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Informed Informed
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • No involvement
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown

Involvement

The measure did not undergo a consultation round.

Views and reactions

The Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions SAK has complimented the government on the measure that they consider to be well targeted to those most in need in the light of rising living costs. The Confederation of Finnish Industries has not issued a press release regarding the government’s fiscal plans.

Sources

  • 09 September 2021: 80% of Finns receive allowances from the Social Insurance Institution of Finland - and there is nothing wrong with that. These are the endowments Finns receive. (Suomalaisista 80 prosenttia saa Kelasta tukea, eikä siinä ole mitään väärää, sanoo professori – Näitä tukia suomalaisille maksetaan) (www.hs.fi)
  • 05 April 2022: SAK thankful for early index increase (SAK kiittää indeksikorotusten aikaistamista ) (www.sak.fi)
  • 12 May 2022: The government proposes an additional index increase to social endowments in 2022 (Hallitus esittää sosiaaliturvaetuuksiin ylimääräistä indeksikorotusta vuodelle 2022) (valtioneuvosto.fi)

Citation

Eurofound (2022), Increase in study allowances to mitigate the effects of increased cost of living, measure FI-2022-32/2201 (measures in Finland), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/FI-2022-32_2201.html

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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.