Reforming the Antiquities Act - Finnish Heritage Agency Reforming the Antiquities Act
Muinaismuistolaki 2000
Foto: Päivi Maaranen, Finnish Heritage Agency

Reforming the Antiquities Act

Muinaismuistolain uudistamista valmistellaan opetus- ja kulttuuriministeriön asettamassa työryhmässä ja seurantaryhmässä. Työ- ja seurantaryhmien toimikausi on alkanut 1.11.2020. Työryhmän tehtävänä on vuorovaikutuksessa seurantaryhmän kanssa valmistella ehdotus muinaismuistolain kokonaisuudistukseksi.

The Antiquities Act has been in force in its current form for over 50 years. However, society has faced significant structural changes since the Act entered into force. Furthermore, legislation on use of the environment, official operations and administrative procedures has been updated substantially. Due to the changes in the operating environment, the Antiquities Act from 1963 needs to be updated as a whole.

The reforms to the Antiquities Act are being prepared by the working group and follow-up group appointed by the Ministry of Education and Culture. The term of these groups started on 1 November 2020. The working group’s task is to prepare a proposal for overall amendments to the Antiquities Act, in cooperation with the follow-up group.

In the reform, the objectives for the protection of, research into and access to information on relics will be assessed and defined. It will also clarify the definitions and legal consequences related to archaeological sites, movable relics and other types of archaeological cultural heritage. In addition to this, the interfaces with other legislation will also be assessed. Furthermore, the procedures for implementing the law and the division of responsibilities between authorities will be updated and regulated more specifically than currently.

The reform will pay attention to the realisation of Sámi autonomy regarding their languages and culture, as well as the rights of the Sámi as indigenous people. Because of this, a separate review will be carried out during the work regarding the autonomy regarding Sámi languages and culture and the rights of indigenous peoples in the protection of relics.

The Finnish Heritage Agency has appointed its own representatives for the working and follow-up groups and the secretariat.

You can find current information about the reform of the Antiquities Act on the website of the Ministry of Education and Culture (in Finnish).