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Helsinki (28.01.2022 - Heikki Jokinen) The number of employed people was 128,000 higher in December 2021 than one year before, according to the Labour Force Survey by Statistics Finland. And the number of unemployed persons was 16,000 fewer in December than a year ago.

The Government of PM Sanna Marin has a goal to reach a 75 per cent employment rate by the end of 2023. This goal is getting closer to being realised, as the trend of the employment rate was 73.5 per cent in December and the trend of the unemployment rate was 7.0 per cent.

The number of unemployed went down by 7.9 per cent in a year but as at the same time the number of inactive population went down 8.1 per cent, the unemployment rate did not fall very much.

The rise of employment is clear, says Statistics Finland in a press release. "In December, the employment rate, that is, the proportion of the employed among persons aged 15 to 64, stood at 73.3 per cent, having been 70.0 per cent one year earlier."

"From the previous year’s December, the employment rate of men aged 15 to 64 rose by 3.2 percentage points to 73.7 per cent and that of women went up by 3.5 percentage points to 73.0 per cent. The employment rate of people aged 20 to 69 was 71.5 per cent, having been 68.4 per cent in the year before."

During December, 91,000 new vacancies were reported, which was 40,000 more than in the previous year's December, reports the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.

These figures show a clear positive development, but the downside is that long-term unemployment is not going down. Also, a big part of the new jobs are part-time.

Migri, the Finnish Immigration Service, reports that in 2021 it received more applications for a residence permit on the basis of work than ever before, in spite of the pandemic.

A total of 36,206 applications for a first residence permit were submitted in 2021. Out of these, 15,012 were submitted on the basis of work. In 2020, Migri received 21,160 applications for a first residence permit, 8,771 of these for work in Finland.

The number of seasonal workers increased, too. A total of 15,892 seasonal workers received a positive decision to work in Finland. In 2020, the figure was 13,301. Most of them were from Ukraine and worked on farms.

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