Current issue: 54(2)
There is no clear picture in Finland of how big the revenues are that the State and the local authorities receive from taxation for the part of primary forestry. Conception of taxation varies from 100% to 50%. The paper presents a comparison between the gross income from timber sales as determined according to the method used at the Central Statistics Bureau and the net revenues as calculated on the basis of forest fee.
At 1920s area taxation was introduced in forest taxation. The system is based on forest types and their timber production capacity. According to the principles of area taxation, no tax is paid for overcuts, whereas timber capital savings should be paid for.
According to the calculations of this study, in 1958–62 the gross income from timber sales was about 506 million Fmk annually in Southern Finland, the costs involved in timber production about 437 million Fmk, and the annual taxable income 231 million Fmk. In the period more valuable timber assortments were harvested than those for which taxes were paid according to the old regulations.
Half a century ago, area taxation was a system suited to its purpose. Now, however, forestry is in the hands of another generation, and accounting has been introduced in practical agriculture and forestry. Therefore, a taxation system based on the real income from timber growing should be introduced. The transition period could even be relatively short. It seems probable that a forest owner does not sell timber at a time when this would be required by silvicultural aspects in order to avoid income taxation, he should have to be present an acceptable working plan.
The PDF includes a summary in English.