Throughout the history, forestry industry has been one of the most important industries in Finland. Even today, around 77 % of Finland's land area is forest and it’s the only European country where the figure is over 70 %. Hence, the importance of this sector is quite understandable. For three decades, growth of forests has been bigger than harvesting and natural removal.

Private people own 52 % of the forests. The state owns 35 % of forestry land, 8 % is owned by private industries and 5 % by other organizations. Almost half of the state owned forests are protected and they are mainly located in Northern Lapland. Wood harvesting is done effectively in Finland. Only a few per cent of timber-felling is done manually. In addition, wood materials from harvesting and thinning are increasingly used as fuel for energy plants.

Harvested wood is, in majority refined to paper, board and furniture. The increase of the use in construction and energy production, together with unfavourable weather conditions, as in the coldest winters, is likely to increase the price of wood. As this happens, there will be more need for imported wood materials.

Finnish forest research and education is regarded highly internationally. Many universities offer forest science studies and research. The Finnish Forest Research Institute conducts the main thread of research on forests. Research organizations are generally interested in knowledge exchange and international research projects.