Sales licences and notifications under the Tobacco Act and the Medicines Act

You need a retail licence for tobacco products, nicotine-containing liquids and nicotine products. A sales licence for nicotine products can only be granted to sales points that also have a retail sales licence for tobacco products and nicotine-containing liquids. For the moment being, a retail licence is not required for selling tobacco substitutes, such as nicotine pouches.

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You need a sales licence for tobacco products, nicotine-containing liquids and nicotine products. The retail sales licence is sales point-specific, and licences are granted in Helsinki by the Environmental Services under the Urban Environment Division. You must submit a notification for the wholesale of tobacco products and nicotine-containing liquids.

The City's Environmental Services supervises the sales of tobacco products, electronic cigarettes and nicotine-containing liquids, as well as compliance with smoking bans and restrictions. Tobacco products, tobacco substitutes and imitation tobacco are also subject to controls. In addition, Environmental Services supervises the sale of nicotine products in accordance with the Medicines Act.

Apply for a sales licence under the Tobacco Act

Apply for a sales licence for tobacco products and nicotine-containing liquids and submit a written notification of wholesale to the municipality. Apply online on the website of the Finnish National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health (Valvira). Notify the permit issuer of any changes to the permit information and the discontinuation of the sale. Changes to permit information and discontinuation of operations can be notified in free form either by e-mail to kymp.tupakkalupa@hel.fi or by post to the City of Helsinki Environmental Services, P.O. Box 58235, 00099 CITY OF HELSINKI. The notification must include the following information: the sales licence holder, the point of sale, the licence number and the date of the change/discontinuation.

Additional information

If you are unable to submit the notification in the Valvira service, fill in the PDF form and send it by e-mail to kymp.tupakkalupa@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program).

Send us mail

Postal address

City of Helsinki/ Environmental Services, P.O. Box 58235 00099 CITY OF HELSINKI

Checklist for applying for a sales licence

  1. Read the instructions and fill out the application form

    You can find instructions for applying for a sales licence(Link leads to external service) for tobacco products and instructions for submitting the wholesale notification(Link leads to external service), as well as the application and notification forms on the website of the Finnish National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health (Valvira).

  2. Submit the application to Valvira

    You can submit applications and notifications for points of sale of tobacco products in Helsinki through Valvira’s electronic system (in Finnish)(Link leads to external service).

  3. Retrieve the identification codes required by the traceability system for tobacco product sales points

    More information is available on Valvira’s website(Link leads to external service) (in Finnish).

  4. Wait until your application is processed

    The Environmental Services of the Urban Environment Division will process your application, taking into account its urgency, before the start of your operations. The sales of tobacco products may not be started until the municipality has granted the sales licence.

  5. Pay the handling fee

    We will charge a fee for handling your application, the current fees can be found in the table of rates (PDF). In addition, you must pay an annual supervision fee.

  6. Remember to notify us of changes

    If your licence information, such as the number of sales points or the name of the point of sale, change or you discontinue the sales of tobacco products, please notify us by e-mail to kymp.tupakkalupa@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program) or by mail to 

    City of Helsinki
    Environmental Services
    P.O. Box 58235
    00099 CITY OF HELSINKI

Apply for a retail permit for nicotine products

You need a sales licence for the retail sale of nicotine products, in accordance with the Medicines Act.

In Helsinki, the Environmental Services under the Urban Environment Division grants the sales licences for nicotine products to retail stores, kiosks, service stations and restaurants. We can only grant a sales licence to sales points that also have a retail sales licence for tobacco products and nicotine-containing liquids. We will process your application, taking into account its urgency, before the start of your operations.

We will charge a fee for handling your application, in addition to which you must pay an annual supervision fee. Read more about the fees in the rates of the City of Helsinki’s environmental health care (PDF).

For the retail sales of nicotine products, fill in the application (PDF) and send it by e-mail to helsinki.kirjaamo@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program) or by mail to

City of Helsinki
The Registrar’s Office / Environmental Services
P.O. Box 10
00099 CITY OF HELSINKI 

Starting the sales of nicotine-containing liquids

If you already have a retail sales licence for tobacco products, you can submit a free-form notification of the sales of nicotine-containing liquids to the same municipality that granted you the licence. In Helsinki, you can send the notification via e-mail to kymp.tupakkalupa@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program).

However, if your retail sales licence was granted before 15 August 2016, that is, under the old Tobacco Act, you may also sell nicotine-containing liquids at the same point of sale after you have submitted a written notification and submitted an updated own-check plan, as well as a description of the number and location of the sales points. In Helsinki, you can send the notification and its attachments via e-mail to kymp.tupakkalupa@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program). Holders of sales licences under the old Tobacco Act are charged a fee of EUR 95 for the handling of the notifications. Starting the sales of nicotine-containing liquids affects the annual monitoring fee.

Annual monitoring fees for retail sales

The current annual monitoring fee for retail sales of tobacco products and nicotine liquids in Helsinki is 

  • EUR 500 per point of sale for either tobacco products or nicotine-containing liquids; 
  • EUR 1,000 per point of sale for both tobacco products and nicotine-containing liquids.

This means that the supervision fee at one point of sale is EUR 500 or EUR 1,000, depending on whether the shop sells both tobacco products and nicotine liquids or only one of these. For example, the monitoring fee for a shop with five cash registers (points of sale) that sells tobacco products is EUR 2,500. 

The monitoring fee is determined on 1 January and it covers all permits effective on that date. For the first year, the fee is determined on the date when the sales licence is granted. The fees will not be refunded.

The annual monitoring fee for nicotine products is EUR 125 per point of sale. You will be charged for all permits valid on the date of determining the monitoring fee (1 January). For the first year, the fee is determined on the date when the sales licence is granted. The fees will not be refunded.

Notification of changes and discontinuation of sales

If the information of your sales licence for tobacco products, nicotine-containing liquids or nicotine products changes or you discontinue your operations, you must submit a notification. If your business ID or the address of your point of sale changes, you must apply for a new permit.

Changes in the number of sales points and product groups on sale affect the annual monitoring fee for tobacco products and nicotine-containing liquids. The monitoring fee is determined on 1 January and it covers all permits effective on that date. The fees will not be refunded or adjusted to the duration of the operations.

Changes to permit information and discontinuation of operations can be notified in free form. The notification must include the following information: the sales licence holder, the point of sale, the licence number and the date of the change/discontinuation.

Submit the change notification via e-mail to kymp.tupakkalupa@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program) or by mail to: 

City of Helsinki
Environmental Services
P.O. Box 58235 
00099 CITY OF HELSINKI