Health and social services reform involves changes to the Act on environmental requirements in public vehicle procurement

Press release 17.02.2022 16.44 fi sv en

Photo: Mika Pakarinen, Keksi / Ministry of Transport and Communications

Due to the health and social services reform, the Act on environmental and energy efficiency requirements in vehicle and transport services procurement will be reviewed.

As the responsibility for organising health and social services and rescue services transfers from municipalities to wellbeing services counties, the levels of obligations to be applied for the vehicle and transport services procurement should be determined. The Ministry of Transport and Communications will start preparing the required legislative amendments.

The Act, which entered into force in August 2021, places obligations on local and central government to ensure a certain proportion of zero and low-emission vehicles in public procurement processes. The Act applies, for example, to the procurement of vehicles and transport services by local and central government or parishes in relation to school transport, waste collection, local bus transport and transport reimbursed by the Social Insurance Institution of Finland. It also applies to procurement through concession contracts. The Act implements the EU Clean Vehicle Directive.

As the responsibility for organising health and social services and rescue services transfers from municipalities to wellbeing services counties, the levels of obligations to be applied for the vehicle and transport services procurement will be determined. To take the regional differences into consideration, the minimum levels of environmentally friendly vehicles in local government procurement have been differentiated in the Act.

In addition, it will be assessed, whether a penalty payment would be an appropriate sanction for ensuring that the obligations of the Act are met.

The Act on environmental and energy efficiency requirements in vehicle and transport services procurement promotes the use of alternative fuels such as electricity, gas and biofuels. The legislations supports the European Union’s aim to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. It is also part of the Government’s Roadmap for Fossil-free Transport.

What’s next?

The draft bill is expected to be submitted for consultation in summer 2022. Expert reports are to be commissioned on the differentiation of the obligations for the wellbeing services counties and on the possible penalty payments.

The legislative amendment would enter into force on 1 January 2023 as the responsibility for organising the duties related to health and social services transfers from municipalities to well-being counties.

Inquiries:

Pinja Oksanen, Senior Officer, tel. +358 295 342182, pinja.oksanen(at)gov.fi