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Responsible international cooperation

Fingrid requests tenders for grid construction projects and some of its goods deliveries internationally. Competitive tendering is based on supplier registers that contractors can join if they meet the qualitative and quantitative requirements.

“Under EU competition legislation, competitive tendering processes in the energy sector are international. Fingrid has a record number of construction projects underway, so there would not be enough Finnish workers for all the projects,” says Ritva Laine, an experienced client in competitive tendering procedures and Senior Project Manager at Fingrid.

Fingrid accepts the companies whose operating practices it has audited for inclusion in the register before the competitive tendering process begins. At present, the contractors are all European companies and requests for tenders are only sent to companies in the register.

Fingrid conducts worksite audits of all its contractors in Finland while work is underway, inspecting the on-site conditions, occupational safety and working time procedures. Finland’s climate makes work challenging, as the winter is cold and dark.

“Many foreign companies are surprised to learn that winter is the best time to build transmission lines due to our boggy soil. In the summer, the ground is too soft for heavy-duty vehicles in many places,” Laine says.

Suppliers are always audited

In addition to contractors, projects require materials, such as towers and components, conductors and transformers. These are delivered from all over the world.

Contractors make most of the purchases themselves. Fingrid ensures that the companies are technically competent and pass social audits.

For example, Fingrid orders large system transformers for substations and conductors for transmission lines. EU competition law regulates the company’s direct procurements of goods.

Fingrid conducts technical audits itself, but it uses a third party and local auditors for social auditing. They know the local legislation, language and conditions. The working conditions, working hours, remuneration, management system and freedom of association are assessed for each company.

“We often use the same contractors and suppliers when we are satisfied with their work,”
Laine says.

Experiences in Finland

Fingrid asked three European contractors to talk about their experiences working in Finland.
  1. Which Fingrid projects have you worked on?
  2. What challenges did Finland’s climate and nature present for these projects?
  3. What was it like to work with Fingrid?
Ajdin Skejic, Project Manager, Tecnolines, Italy:

1. Tecnolines has worked on two projects in Northern Finland: In 2022: part A of the 400 kV Aurora Line, 73 km and 6.5 km of modification work. In 2023: 110 kV modification work in Isohaara.
2. The conditions were often very difficult for climbing towers and working 30 metres above the ground where the wind makes it feel even colder. Working in freezing temperatures affects the progress on the worksite. Fingrid requires employees to have thorough training and familiarise themselves with the weather conditions before starting work.
3. Working with Fingrid has been excellent. They are always available and always answer our questions. The monthly worksite meetings have been very good for our projects and resolved any outstanding issues. We were positively surprised by how quickly solved practical issues related to landowners, for example.

Daniele Bertussi, Contract Management Director, Tamini Trasformatori, Italy:

1. In 2023, Tamini has been involved in the MUU6 and MUU8 projects, supplying seven Fingrid substations with transformers equipped with power supplies for internal consumption.
2. In our ongoing projects, we have taken the Finnish climate into consideration from the outset, as it affects the design of the transformers we supply. The winter weather caused some challenges in the transportation and installation phases, but we overcame them without any difficulties thanks to our extensive experience in the field.
3. The cooperation between Tamini and Fingrid has been very open, fair, fruitful and mutually appreciated. In the near future, we will supply Fingrid with 400 MVA and 400 kV transformers filled with synthetic esters.

Francisco Javier Ortega Quesada, Site Manager, Elecnor, Spain:

1. Elecnor has worked with Fingrid on two projects: In 2021 and 2022, we worked on the 400 kV Petäjävesi–Pyhänselkä transmission line, known as the Forest Line. In 2023, we have worked on the Tuovila substation, another 400/110 kV conversion, and this project is ongoing.
2. The foundation work was the main challenge in both projects. The hard, frozen ground makes the work much more complicated. Progress has slowed, as we have needed machines to heat the ground and chip away the frozen soil. In addition, the performance of our employees was significantly hampered by the temperature, snow and icy conditions.
3. I have had good experiences working with Fingrid on their projects. They have experienced experts who facilitate the work on-site.


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