The employment rate trend in Finland reached 72.8% in August, according to Statistics Finland’s latest labor force survey, with 104,000 more people in employment compared to the same month last year.
This is a very slight improvement from the figures for July, when the rate hit 72.7%. It was then the highest level since February 2020, when the coronavirus pandemic began to affect the Finnish economy.
The latest increase equates to 59,000 more female employees and 44,000 more male employees, data from the agency’s calculation of the figures revealed.
The latest figures also show that there were 33,000 fewer unemployed this year compared to August 2020, with the unemployment rate falling to 7.6%.
At the end of August, a total of 281,000 people were registered as job seekers in national employment and economic development offices or in local authority pilot projects.
The regions of Ostrobothnia, Southern Ostrobothnia and Pirkanmaa recorded the largest decreases in unemployment, while Kainuu, Central Finland, Häme and Uusimaa recorded only very small reductions in the local unemployment rate.
Employers’ group predicts labor shortages
Despite the latest increase in the employment rate, pressure group Technology Industries of Finland noted in a press release that Finland will face a shortage of skilled labor over the next decade, which could nullify the benefits of expected economic growth.
As an example, the group cited a recent report which found that the tech industry will need 130,000 skilled specialists over the next decade, or about 13,300 per year.
Many sub-sectors, including metal processing and information technology, will need to recruit skilled workers – the majority from abroad – to bridge the gap caused by Finland’s aging population. If this does not happen, the group noted, the rate of economic growth will not be sustained.
“The indisputable fact is that due to an aging population and low birth rates, the working age population will decline sharply in the years to come and there will not be enough workers in all sectors.” , said the executive vice president. Minna Helle written in the press release. “If we are to ensure economic growth, social services and living standards, our only option is to facilitate labor migration in many different ways – and quickly. “
Yle News’ All Points North podcast looked at the challenges faced by skilled workers coming to Finland. You can listen to the full podcast using the built-in player here, via Yle arena, Spotify Where Apple podcasts or on your usual podcast player using the RSS feed.