Posted on June 19, 2023

Finland’s New Government Announces ‘Paradigm Shift’ With Immigration Crackdown

AFP, June 16, 2023

“I am delighted that together with our negotiating partners we have agreed on an immigration package that can rightly be called a paradigm shift,” Finns Party leader Riikka Purra told reporters alongside her government partners.

Purra, whose anti-immigration party came second in the April elections with their highest support ever, said that until now “Finland has been the only Nordic country with a looser immigration policy.”

“This changes now,” she added.

The government on Friday said it aimed to halve the number of refugees the Nordic country receives through the UN refugee agency from 1,050 a year to 500.

It also aims to establish separate social security benefit systems for immigrants and permanent residents which experts say potentially clash with the constitution.

Conditions for obtaining permanent residency and citizenship will also be tightened, Purra added, with new requirements on language skills and longer periods of residence.

Residence permits granted under international protection “will become temporary and their duration will be reduced to the EU minimum,” Purra said {snip}

The government also plans to crack down on street gangs, aiming to increase penalties for gang activity and introduce new legislation that makes street gang activity a separate aggravating offence.


In 2021, around 8.5 percent of Finland’s population, or 470,000 people, were of foreign origin.


Future Prime Minister Petteri Orpo appears to have had to concede on the immigration crackdown in order to secure support for his six-billion-euro austerity plan.