Monday 10/25/21
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Finland drafts roadmap to double work-based immigration by 2030

At the same time, the number of new foreign students should triple to 15,000 students a year, with the aim that 75% of them stay in Finland for work after graduation
Prime Minister Sanna Marin, talking to the media during the budget negotiations. Photo: Fanni Uusitalo/Vnk.
Prime Minister Sanna Marin, speaking to the media during the budget negotiations. Photo: Fanni Uusitalo/Vnk.

Finland intends to double the number of foreign skilled workers between now and 2030. And with that idea in mind, the government chaired by the Social Democrat Sanna Marin has drawn up a roadmap that includes facilitating the immigration of experts to the Nordic country.

"Finland needs more work-based and education-based immigration to help companies find enough experts and to strengthen Finland’s vitality and public finances. The roadmap for education-based and work-based immigration is a long-term action plan to achieve the objectives set for immigration of specialists, entrepreneurs, researchers and students," the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment said in a statement.

The roadmap adopted by the Government in its budget session compiles measures to make Finland an attractive country to work and study, where the immigration process is "easy and seamless." The aim is to significantly improve Finland’s position in the global competition for international talents and students.

Government emphasizes that, in particular, responding to the labour shortage in the leading high-tech growth sectors requires that experts are sought beyond the Finnish borders.

The Government’s objective is to "at least double work-based immigration from its current level by 2030."

At the same time, the number of new foreign students should triple to 15,000 students a year, with the aim that 75% of them stay in Finland for work after graduation.

Seamless digital services

Success in achieving these goals requires seamless digital service paths for both employers and skilled workers.

According to the government, all services provided by the authorities and other services supporting the integration of skilled workers and their families will be linked together to make it easier for them to enter and settle in Finland.

"The aim is to have the best immigration experience in the world," the government says.

A long-term plan

The roadmap includes a plan extending until 2035 on how to promote the immigration of skilled labour:

  • Clarifying and digitalising residence permit processes and other public services makes entering the country easy.
  • Service portals for employers and employees and regional Talent Hub networks will match workers with suitable work.
  • International recruitment services for companies will facilitate the hiring of foreign experts.
  • English-language schools and daycare centres and programmes for spouses will help the families settle in Finland. 
  • High-quality education programmes focusing on working life and mentoring programmes offered by higher education institutions will help foreign researchers and students to establish themselves in Finland and will open doors to Finnish networks for them.
  • The needs for education-based and work-based immigration in regions and sectors will be better identified by developing knowledge-based management and foresight.

"The roadmap for education-based and work-based immigration provides us with long-term tools to create a receptive and non-discriminatory working life that offers attractive career opportunities. The aim is to have a positive immigration experience and for immigrants to have a good, safe and easy everyday life as equal and active members of society. At the same time, we will enable employers to find skilled workers from abroad," says Minister of Employment Tuula Haatainen.

"We must make better use of the expertise of international talents in creating new growth and vitality. Increasing the number of foreign students and ensuring that more of them stay in Finland will support the development of our higher education institutions and the internationalisation of our companies," says Minister of Science and Culture Antti Kurvinen.

In addition to private individuals, representatives of ministries, regional and local state administration, labour market organisations, companies, municipal and regional organisations as well as higher education institutions, other educational institutions and research organisations have participated in the preparation of the roadmap.

Finland drafts roadmap to double work-based immigration by 2030
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