Finland’s goal is to streamline the permit procedure for Ukrainians applying for work

Finland's goal is to streamline the permit procedure for Ukrainians applying for work

The Finnish Immigration Service Migri has announced its plans to speed up the employment processes of Ukrainians who have sought asylum in Finland during the war in their home country.

A residence permit that allows Ukrainians to work in Finland could be available within a couple of weeks, Director General of the Agency Jari Kähkönen told Yle. Under the current system, obtaining a residence permit based on the status of temporary protection offered to Ukrainian citizens can take several weeks.

It can take up to two weeks to process the permit, while it can take another two weeks to notify the applicant and provide the residence card. However, in the new operating model, the applicant is informed of the decision much faster and they do not have to wait for a residence permit to be issued before starting work.

Kähkönen acknowledged that there are opportunities to streamline the process, including increasing human resources to process applications.

"This greatly speeds up the way in which a person receiving temporary protection is informed of his or her decision. We expect it to accelerate [the process] at least a week, maybe a week and a half," Kähkönen said and added that up-to-date contact information for each applicant is also useful to speed up the process.

Ukrainians have good job opportunities in Finland

According to Kähkönen, the employment prospects of Ukrainian citizens who moved to Finland after the Russian invasion on 24 February are good, as about 15,000 Ukrainians have previously done seasonal work in Finland, for example on berry farms.

"I have been told they have jobs. That is why I think it is important that we now try to speed up their employment process," Kähkönen said.

Jari Kähkönen, Director General of the Finnish Immigration Service, recently told Yle News’ weekly podcast All Points North that Ukrainians arriving in Finland should register with the authorities as soon as possible. You can listen to the full podcast on the embedded player here, through Yle Areena, Spotify, Apple podcasts or anywhere you get podcasts.

Migri has previously estimated that 40,000–80,000 Ukrainian citizens may arrive in Finland this year alone, and the longer the war in Ukraine, the higher the number.

Ukrainians who have been granted temporary protection have the right to work and social and health care services, the Ministry of Employment and the Economy has stated.

Authorization unit confirmed by internal transfers, temporary staff

Kähkönen further told Yle that the number of Migri personnel handling permit applications from Ukrainian citizens has been increased both through internal transfers and temporary staff. More than 50 people have been transferred from other departments of the agency to support the unit for temporary protection permits, he said.

He also noted that it is important that people who have fled Ukraine after the Russian invasion return to some kind of normal life as soon as possible, and finding a job can help achieve this.

The agency estimates that about 85 per cent of Ukrainians who have arrived in Finland so far are women and as many as 40 per cent are under 18 years of age.

"This means that there is a need for school places and, of course, it is also important for the municipalities that provide the services and opportunities they provide." Kähkönen added.

To date, about 15,000 Ukrainian citizens have applied for protection in Finland, more than 20 per cent of whom have since obtained a residence permit on the basis of their temporary protection status. However, the exact number of people who have arrived in Finland so far is probably much higher, as many have not yet registered with the authorities.

The Finnish Immigration Service is also gave advice For offers of work, transport or accommodation to Ukrainian citizens.

Source: The Nordic Page

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