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JUHANI ARTTO
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Foreigners living in Finland are much younger
than Finnish nationals


Helsinki (12.08.2011 - Juhani Artto) In 2010, the average age of Finnish nationals was 42.4 years, slightly above the EU-27 average (41.5). On average foreigners and foreign-born people living in Finland are much younger. The average figures for the above are 32.9 and 34.3 respectively, whereas the figures for EU-27 are 34.4 and 40.0.

As Finland suffers from an ageing population it is fair to say that Finnish society and its labour market have benefited from immigration. The Finnish trade unions are well aware of this and welcome immigrant labour to work in Finland as long as Finnish legislation and Finnish collective agreements are applied to their working conditions.

As of yet, the impact of foreigners and foreign-born people on age distribution has remained marginal as the number of foreigners and foreign-born making up the total population of the country has never been large. In 2010 the proportion of foreigners was only 2.9 per cent (the EU-27 average was 6.5 per cent) and the percentage of foreign-born was 4.3 per cent (the EU-27 average was 9.4 per cent).

In Northern Europe the Finnish figures represent something of an anomaly. The number of foreigners and foreign-born is much smaller in Finland than in the other Nordic countries (Sweden, Norway, Denmark) and the closest Baltic Republics Estonia and Latvia.

Source: Eurostat 34/2011