A report published last year revealed concerns in Helsinki about the purchase of houses near strategic locations
Finland’s government plans to block foreigners from buying houses near military sites amid claims that Russians were acquiring land to accommodate troops in the event of a potential invasion.
The Finnish Ministry of Defence said some property transactions by non-residents would be cancelled on the grounds of national security.
The move follows reports in Finland late last year that foreigners, namely Russians, were buying up property in politically-sensitive areas in case they were needed in a future “crisis situation”.
A report by intelligence agency Supo warned of the risk of a foreign state using purchased land to cut transport links or house soldiers in Finland.
MP Suna Kymäläisen, who revealed that some property transactions would be cancelled, said sales of land close to the border between Finland and Russia and summer cottages near airports would be probed by the MoD.
The Government plans to launch a formal investigation in March. The Ministry of Justice will then prepare legislation aimed at blocking foreigners from buying land in strategically important locations.
“It may be necessary to block some real estate transactions entered into by foreigners if the purchased property is located near strategic facilities,” Ms Kymäläisen told Finnish broadcaster Yle.