The official currency in Finland is the euro. The ISO code is called “EUR” and “€” is used as the symbol for the currency.
One euro is divided into 100 euro cents. The central bank in Helsinki is responsible for issuing the country-specific euro coins. The Finnish 1 and 2 cent coins are minted only in very small numbers. However, these are not in circulation in normal payment transactions, which gives them a high value among collectors. The reason for this is that traditionally, amounts are always rounded to the nearest 5 cents, as the smaller coins have practically no purchase value. The 1 and 2 cent coins have to be accepted in shops, which unfortunately is not always the case in practice.
The following 16 other EU member states use the euro together with Finland: Belgium, Germany, Estonia, France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Cyprus. It is also the official currency in Monaco, San Marino, Vatican, Andorra, Kosovo and Montenegro.
Introduction of the euro in Finland
In Finland, the euro was introduced as a currency on January 1, 2002. Before that, the Finnish mark (100 pfennigs) was the official currency. This had already been linked to the exchange rate of the ECU (European Currency Unit, an accounting forerunner of the euro) since 1991. After Finland joined the EU in 1995, the country also joined the European exchange rate system in 1996. Before it was introduced as a means of payment, the euro had been the accounting currency since 1999.
The exchange rate of the euro is not tied to the gold price or the dollar, but forms freely on the market, influenced by the economic strength of the individual member states and the policies of the European Central Bank. Since 1999 the exchange rate of the euro to the dollar has developed negatively at first, but then increased and at the beginning of 2013 is around € 1 = USD 1.3.
However, some countries have pegged the exchange rate of their currencies to the euro. Bosnia-Herzegovina, Lithuania and Bulgaria have a fixed exchange rate to the euro in Europe. Denmark and Latvia only allow the rate to fluctuate to a certain extent.
Euro prices in Finland
Since the euro is the official currency in both Germany and Finland, it is not necessary to convert. It should be noted, however, that the general price level in Finland is significantly higher than that in Germany. Finnish prices are around 25% above the European average. Finland is thus the third most expensive EU country.