Svensk sida


In 2016 Finland had about 5,4 million inhabitants. Finland has had less immigration than the other Nordic countries, but even there the number of foreign born persons or people with parents born in other countries has grown.

In 1990 only 1,3 percent of the inhabitants were born in a foreigncountry, compared to 5,0 percent in 2014. In 2015 there were 32 476 asylum seekers in Finland, in 2016 this number was 5 657 persons. After 1990 the biggest group of immigrants arrived from the previous Soviet Union.

Nowadayspeople arrive from a larger number of countries – Syria, Iraq, Somalia, Eritrea and others.The foreign born inhabitants in Finland are relatively young and because of that there are yet noexperiences with the ”second generation of immigrants”.

About 50 percent of the immigrants live in Helsinki and the surroundings.


  • Labour market is pointed out as the most important issue of integration. Finland has had aneconomic depression and the unemployment among the foreign born inhabitants is higherthan among the people born in Finland. New ideas for stimulating integration in theworking life are of high value. It concerns efforts that more directly can lead to employment for example professional internships in combination with language training.


• There is some discontent caused by the fact that the waiting period between receiving theresidence permit and finding accommodation in a municipality is too long. It makes theintegration process more complicated. The housing situation is problematic, especially in the Helsinki-region.

• The civic society was very active in the acute situation, when many people were moving to Finland. Now it is pointed out that the civic society has an important role even in the longterm work for integration. It is said that the cooperation between different actors should beimproved.



Nordens välfärdscenter | tel: +46 8 545 536 00 | | En institution under Nordiska ministerrådet