This week Yle News' All Points North podcast revisits the topic of residence permit hurdles, following news of measures intended to speed up the immigration process.
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"Next summer we will launch a fast track for growth entrepreneurs and their family members. It means that the person submits an electronic permit application and then the decision on it will come in two weeks," Minister of Employment Tuula Haatainen (SDP) told APN.
The move follows thegovernment's aim to double the number of work-based migrants by 2030
"This government has faced the music and sees what the situation is. We need people to come here to work from abroad—from outside the EU—and we also see that there are many bureaucratic hindrances, things that make these processes so slow," Haatainen said.
Gaming company Supercell, which has been vocal about Finland's slow-moving immigration bureaucracy hampering foreign recruitment, said its workers have sometimes been forced to wait more than half a year for Migri to issue a permit.
Beyond the red tape, Supercell's legal counsel, Markku Ignatius, also called on Finland to become more open-minded towards newcomers who are learning Finnish.
"I would argue that there are a lot of jobs here in Finland where the number one criteria isn't necessarily that you are a native Finnish speaker," he said. "I would encourage companies to be bolder in terms of recruiting that first maybe-not-excellent Finnish speaker."
Free hobbies, food waste and niche sports
This week Finland is rolling out free children's hobbies in most municipalities in an effort to give every school kid the opportunity to try an activity.
Anna Puhakka, who runs the programme in Vantaa, said the city was offering everything from art and dance to robotics, gaming and aviation.
"The idea is to create hobby opportunities that aren't restricted because of your financial background," she explained.
As it's food waste awareness week in Finland, APN also investigates how much of your food ends up in the trash.
And did you know you can play Aussie rules football, rugby and even hurling in Finland? We find out what it's like to establish a minority sport far from home.
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This week's show was presented by Zena Iovino and Egan Richardson. The producer was Mark B. Odom and the audio engineer was Panu Willman.
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