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EK CEO: Firms to integrate migrants

Jyri Häkämies, chief of the Confederation of Finnish Industries (EK), says he finds the rise in the number of asylum-seekers in Finland an opportunity for Finland. His company is preparing a series of proposals to increase the proportion of companies helping migrants integrate.

Jyri Häkämies Ylen Ykkösaamussa lauantaina. Image: Yle

CEO Jyri Häkämies of the Confederation of Finnish Industries (EK) says that the growing number of migrants in Finland could improve the country's economy and help fill the sustainability gap.

"There are areas that suffer from a manpower shortage and the population is aging," Häkämies says. "These include the care and service sectors."

Häkämies was interviewed on Yle's morning program on Saturday, where he said he would not be downplaying the challenges or costs posed by the sheer number of migrants in the first phase of business-lead integration.

"But if we are able to integrate immigrants into working life it will have a big effect on our sustainability gap," he said.

EK is currently working on proposals that aim to encourage companies to employ foreign workers.

"It's important to get the word out to companies about employment opportunities for foreigners in the form of internships, apprenticeships and training. The quicker we get these measures up and running the quicker we will help integrate immigrants into Finnish society."

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