Statistics Finland has estimated that the annual net migration gain is currently around 15,000 people, and work-based immigration makes up the majority of immigration. Aki KangasharjuCEO of Etla, stated to STT on Friday. If immigration and emigration continued at the previous pace, the working-age population would shrink by almost a fifth by 2050, Etla warned.
“The biggest problems are related to the financing of the welfare society: the decrease in the number of employees reduces tax and payment revenues, while the life expectancy increases the costs of treatment and care.” report reads.
Etla saw that the problem cannot realistically be solved by raising the birth rate.
“Finland has a lot of room for increasing the employment rate, but it will inevitably fall short of satisfying the need for manpower. Reversing the low birth rate trend with political decisions is extremely difficult, and the solutions are deeply intertwined in the private lives of individuals and families. said Tarmo ValkonenResearch advisor at Etla.
“Society should rather adapt, and therefore attention should be paid to increasing immigration.”
The Finnish government has set the goal of doubling work-related immigration to 50,000 by 2030. The target could be raised further in the coalition negotiations after the April 2nd parliamentary elections.
In the opinion of basic Finns, Finland should rather focus on measures to employ the current workforce. The populist opposition party stated in its recently published immigration program that the country should in principle allow work-based immigration from outside the EU only if the immigrant is highly educated and takes on a high-value-added job.
“If a person applies for a work permit in Finland, the condition for obtaining the permit is that their earnings correspond to the median salary in Finland”. program reads.
Riikka PurraThe chairman of the Basic Finns has recently met harsh criticism from business leaders about his views on immigration – especially his statement that “claims about work-based immigration are a bluff, because Finland has not succeeded in receiving the kind of immigration that is economically advantageous, but receives a lot of economically harmful immigration”.
In its report, Etla acknowledged that the economic impact of immigrants varies by level of education, as low-educated immigrants are more likely to spend more public funds than receive tax revenue. However, low-educated immigrants also support economic growth by ensuring the functionality of services and enabling the native population to adopt jobs that better match their education.
“The effects of immigration on public finances are clearly positive in our simulations,” Kangasharju said.
“The significant increase in wage costs means a reduction in the earnings-related pension contributions of the occupational pension system, and other areas of the public finances also benefit from immigration through increased tax revenues,” he added.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: The Nordic Page