Domestic waterborne traffic: documentation of statistics
Basic data of the statistics
Unit of measure
Frequency of dissemination
Dry cargo ship
Passenger transport performance
Accuracy, reliability and timeliness
There is under-coverage for passenger transport. There are also small companies, often owning one vessel, operating in domestic passenger transport, some of which may operate for a few sailing seasons and then close down, or the vessel is transferred to a new owner and data on the changes are not always available. For this reason, the target population of the statistical inquiry may change partly every year. Data on all new entrepreneurs are not always available at once even though the target population of the inquiry is checked annually from different sources. Only the largest established enterprises engaged in passenger traffic represent continuity in the statistics.
The coverage of the statistics on other lock canals has weakened as a result of the automation of canals. Concerning self-operated locks, only the number of lockings are obtained, as well as data on timber floating and goods transport through the operators. These data can be regarded as reliable.
Comparability - over time
Statistics on traffic through the Saimaa Canal were already compiled in the days of the old Canal from 1856 to 1939 and in the days of the current Canal since 1968. Statistics on traffic through the current Saimaa Canal are mainly comparable starting from 1971. Statistics on other lock canals have been compiled since the completion of each canal. The automation of lock canals into self-operated canals that started in the 1990s has led to traffic volumes no longer being comparable. Prior to automation, the canal lockings were carried out by the lock keeper, which meant that in the busiest boating season the lock could be filled with vessels for one locking. At present, there can sometimes be only a few vessels in the self-operated lock even during the busiest period. By contrast, data on timber floating and goods transport are comparable for a longer time period.
Source data and data collections
When a Finnish or foreign vessel in coastal goods transport arrives in or departs from a Finnish port, the shipping company owning the vessel or, in most cases, its representative, enter the data on the vessel, its cargo and loading and unloading port into the nationwide PortNet system designed for shipping and port services. Data on inland waterways goods transport derive from freighters’ notifications of transport to the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency's Inland Waterways Unit. Data on timber floating derive from operators engaged in floating.
Data on passenger transport are based on an inquiry to enterprises and operators engaged in passenger transport. Enterprises with vessels inspected for passenger transport operating in domestic traffic are included in the enterprise inquiry.
Data on domestic canal traffic derive from vessels’ notifications of transport. The data are stored in the maritime transport statistics system. The data on the number of passengers derive from the vessels' reports to the Saimaa Vessel Traffic Service Centre.
The number of vessels at the Pälli and Mälkiä locks is obtained by vessel type from the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency's Locknet system. The lock operators working at the remote access centre of the Saimaa Canal update the lock-specific log of the Locknet system. The number of lockings in other self-operated lock canals is recorded in lock meters, the readings of which are stored once a month in the Locknet system by lock. In the Vuoksi river basin, self-operated locks are Ahkiolahti, Nerkoo, Lastukoski, Juankoski, Karjalankoski, Pilppa, Vihovonne, Kerma, Karvio and Konnus. Taivallahti and Joensuu are partly self-operated. In the Kymijoki river basin, Kalkkinen, Neituri, Kiesimä, Kerkonkoski and Kolu are self-operated locks and, in addition, the four locks in the Keitele Canal are partly self-operated. In the Kokemäenjoki river basin, self-operated locks are Herraskoski, Murole, Valkeakoski and Lempäälä.
Frequency of data collection
Principles and outlines
Contact organisation unit
Legal acts and other agreements
The compilation of statistics is guided by the Statistics Act. The Statistics Act contains provisions on collection of data, processing of data and the obligation to provide data. Besides the Statistics Act, the Data Protection Act and the Act on the Openness of Government Activities are applied to processing of data when producing statistics.
Statistics Finland compiles statistics in line with the EU’s regulations applicable to statistics, which steer the statistical agencies of all EU Member States.
Further information: Statistical legislation
Confidentiality - policy
The data protection of data collected for statistical purposes is guaranteed in accordance with the requirements of the Statistics Act (280/2004), the Act on the Openness of Government Activities (621/1999), the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (EU) 2016/679 and the Data Protection Act (1050/2018). The data materials are protected at all stages of processing with the necessary physical and technical solutions. Statistics Finland has compiled detailed directions and instructions for confidential processing of the data. Employees have access only to the data essential for their duties. The premises where unit-level data are processed are not accessible to outsiders. Members of the personnel have signed a pledge of secrecy upon entering the service. Violation of data protection is punishable.
Further information: Data protection | Statistics Finland (stat.fi)
Confidentiality - data treatment
Statistics Finland publishes new statistical data at 8 am on weekdays in its web service. The release times of statistics are given in advance in the release calendar available in the web service. The data are public after they have been updated in the web service.
Further information: Publication principles for statistics at Statistics Finland
Accessibility and clarity
Statistical data are published as database tables in the StatFin database. The database is the primary publishing site of data, and new data are updated first there. When releasing statistical data, existing database tables can be updated with new data or completely new database tables can be published.
In addition to statistical data published in the StatFin database, a release on the key data is usually published in the web service. If the release contains data concerning several reference periods (e.g. monthly and annual data), a review bringing together these data is published in the web service. Database tables updated at the time of publication are listed both in the release and in the review. In some cases, statistical data can also be published as mere database releases in the StatFin database. No release or review is published in connection with these database releases.
Releases and database tables are published in three languages, in Finnish, Swedish and English. The language versions of releases may have more limited content than in Finnish.
Information about changes in the publication schedules of releases and database tables and about corrections are given as change releases in the web service.
Data revision - policy
Revisions – i.e. improvements in the accuracy of statistical data already published – are a normal feature of statistical production and result in improved quality of statistics. The principle is that statistical data are based on the best available data and information concerning the statistical phenomenon. On the other hand, the revisions are communicated as transparently as possible in advance. Advance communication ensures that the users can prepare for the data revisions.
The reason why data in statistical releases become revised is often caused by the data becoming supplemented. Then the new, revised statistical figure is based on a wider information basis and describes the phenomenon more accurately than before.
Revisions of statistical data may also be caused by the calculation method used, such as annual benchmarking or updating of weight structures. Changes of base years and used classifications may also cause revisions to data.
Quality management requires comprehensive guidance of activities. The quality management framework of the field of statistics is the European Statistics Code of Practice (CoP). The frameworks complement each other. The quality criteria of Official Statistics of Finland are also compatible with the European Statistics Code of Practice.
Further information: Quality management | Statistics Finland (stat.fi)
Data are released to all users at the same time. Statistical data may only be handled at Statistics Finland and information on them may be given before release only by persons involved in the production of the statistics concerned or who need the data of the statistics concerned in their own work before the data are published.
Further information: Publication principles for statistics
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