Helsinki is home to a growing number of people of foreign background, reports Helsinki Urban Facts.
The number of people of foreign origin, including second-generation immigrants, registered as residents of the city crept up to roughly 90,000 at the end of last year, representing a 14 per cent share of the entire population. Over 15,000 of such residents were second-generation immigrants, while roughly one-half of them had their roots in Europe, one-quarter in Asia and one-fifth in Africa, according to the expert organisation.
Helsinki Urban Facts also reports that the number of foreign-language speakers living in the city increased by some 4,500 in 2015. Russian speakers, it adds, were the largest group of foreign-languge-speakers, with over 17,000 speakers, followed by Estonian, Somali and English speakers. The four largest groups of foreign-language speakers combined accounted for approximately one-half of all foreign-language speakers living in Helsinki.
The share of foreign-languge speakers was particularly high, 22.6 per cent, in the Eastern Major District of Helsinki, highlights Helsinki Urban Facts.
The city had a net migration gain of approximately 3,000 from abroad in 2015. The gain fell short of the levels of previous years due to a decline in the number of people moving from Estonia to Helsinki.
Helsinki Urban Facts points out that foreign-language speakers are less likely to be home owners than residents speaking Finnish, Swedish or Sami.
Residents of foreign origin, it adds, are more likely to be unemployed than their native-born counterparts, with the unemployment rate for residents of foreign origin standing at over 25 per cent and that for native-born residents at below 10 per cent at the end of 2014. The employment rate for 20–64-year-old residents of foreign background was 50 per cent and that for native-born residents almost 75 per cent.
The data also indicate that a high level of educational attainment was less likely to protect residents of foreign origin against unemployment than native-born residents.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Vesa Moilanen – Lehtikuva