At stake in this election:
- 200 seats in the Parliament (Eduskunta)
Description of government structure:
- Chief of State: President Tarja HALONEN
- Head of Government: Prime Minister Mar KIVINIEMI
- Assembly: Finland has a unicameral Parliament (Eduskunta) with 200 seats.
Description of electoral system:
- The President is elected by absolute majority vote through a two-round system to serve a 6-year term.
- The Prime Minister is appointed by the president with the approval of the parliament to serve a 4-year term.
- In the Parliament (Eduskunta), 199 members are elected by open list proportional representation in multi-member constituencies to serve 4-year terms and 1 members are elected by plurality vote in single-member constituencies to serve 4-year terms.***
*** There are 14 multi-member constituencies with anywhere from 6 to 33 seats. Seats are distributed among the individual parties, or alliances of several parties, in accordance with the d'Hondt method.
Main parties in the electoral race:
- Party: Center Party of Finland (KESK) / Suomen Keskusta
Leader: Mari KIVINIEMI
Seats won in last election: 51
- Party: National Coalition Party (KOK) / Kansallinen Kokoomus
Leader: Jyrki KATAINEN
Seats won in last election: 50
- Party: Social Democratic Party of Finland (SDP) / Sosialidemokraattinen
Leader: Jutta URPILAINEN
Seats won in last election: 45
- Party: Left Wing Alliance (VAS) / Vasemmistoliitto****
Leader: Paavo ARHINMAKI
Seats won in last election: 17
- Party: Green League (VIHR) / Vihreä liitto
Leader: Anni SINNEMAKI
Seats won in last election: 15
- Party: Christian Democrats in Finland (KD) / Kristillisdemokraatit
Leader: Paivi RASANEN
Seats won in last election: 7
- Party: Swedish People's Party in Finland (SFP) / Suomen ruotsalainen kansanpuolue
Leader: Stefan WALLIN
Seats won in last election: 9
- Party: True Finns (PeruSS) / Perussuomalaiset
Leader: Timo SOINI
Seats won in last election: 5
**** The Left Alliance (VAS) is composed of People's Democratic League and Democratic Alternative.
Population and number of registered voters:
- Population: 5,259,250 (July 2010 est.)
- Registered Voters: 4,159,857 (April 2011 )