Finland, officially the Republic of Finland, is a Nordic country situated in the Scandinavian portion of Northern Europe. It has borders with Sweden, Russia and Norway to the north, while Estonia lies to its south across the Gulf of Finland.

Finland is the eighth largest country in Europe in terms of area, with a low population density of 16 people per square kilometer, making it the most sparsely populated country in the European Union. As their mother tongue, most Finns speak Finnish, one of the few official languages of the European Union that is not of Indo-European origin. The second official language, Swedish, is spoken natively by a 5.5 percent minority.

Formerly part of Sweden and from 1809 an autonomous Grand Duchy within the Russian Empire, Finland declared its independence in 1917. Today, Finland has been a member state of the United Nations since 1955 and the European Union since 1995. Finland has thriving services and manufacturing sectors and is a highly democratic welfare state with low levels of corruption, consistently ranking at or near the top in international comparisons of national performance. Since 1945, Finland has been at peace, adopting neutrality in wartime.