Morning Headlines: Monday 27th August 2018

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Searching For Seasonal Work, More Finns Head To Greenland

An increasing number of young Finns are heading to one of the Nordic region’s most remote areas in search of summer jobs. The regional job agency Nordjobb says they’ve seen a 40% increase in Nordic workers going to Greenland each summer during the last five years. Most of the jobs for Finnish workers are in fish or shrimp factories, but the hotel and restaurant industry is growing as well. The tourist boom is fueled in part by climate change as people travel to Greenland for a ‘last chance to see’ glaciers, musk ox or even polar bears which are under threat from changing climate conditions. Read more in our original story here.

Terror Attacks Push Finns To Register On Foreign Trips

More and more Finnish tourists are letting authorities know where and when they’ll be traveling abroad, as a spate of terror attacks across Europe prompts people to take extra caution. For the last three years the number of Finns leaving their travel details with the Foreign Ministry has increased by more than 50% over the previous year. A notification can be made free of charge by text message or online, and could help with an emergency situation. However, the overall number of travelers who register with the ministry is still very small. Last year in Spain just 33,000 notifications were registered, while Spain is the most popular holiday destination for Finns who travel abroad.

Stable Number For Early Retirement

The number of people applying for early retirement in Finland remains pretty stable. According to new figures out this morning, there were some 14,000 applicants last year, and 6000 by the end of July this year. However, fewer women than men are looking for early retirement. Both the Finnish Centre for Pensions, and insurance companies Varma and Ilmarinen, report that about two thirds of people applying for early retirement are men. The reasons for this could be explained by the difference in pension amounts and life expectancy. Finnish workers can retire with a partial pension when they reach the age of 61.

Finland’s Para Sports Medal Haul

The Para Athletics European Championships wrapped up in Berlin last night, with Finnish athletes taking a total of 14 medals. Wheelchair track star Leo-Pekka Tähti secured three golds and a silver in his races; Henri Manni snatched a gold and silver. The championship was overshadowed by controversy in the Finnish team, when it was revealed that any athletes who didn’t get a podium finish would have to pay €900 costs for competing in Berlin. The Finnish Paralympic Committee says this has been normal practice for years, but the Minister of Sport and Culture Sampo Terho says he’ll be looking into the practice. Meanwhile, sponsors have stepped in and said they’ll cover those €900 fees, so that athletes don’t have to pay themselves.

Ambassadors Start Helsinki Meeting

Finnish ambassadors from around the world are gathered in Helsinki this week for their annual meeting. The event begins this morning with speeches from Foreign Minister Timo Soini (Blue). The diplomats will also hear from President Sauli Niinistö, Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre) and Finance Minister Petteri Orpo (NCP) during their discussions. Besides foreign and security policy issues, topics on the agenda include artificial intelligence, use of hybrid methods to influence information and opinions, and Finland’s upcoming EU Presidency. This year the Foreign Ministry celebrates it’s 100th anniversary, and you can read about some of the secrets uncovered from the earliest days of Finnish diplomacy at our original story here.

Monday Morning Weather

If you’ve been caught in the heavy rain that’s hit many parts of the country in the last 36 hours, it’s mostly dried up by Monday morning. There’s sill some showers in the north east border region and into Lapland, but the rest of the country will enjoy at least some sunshine at the start of the week. In the capital city region, Turku, the south west and up the coast towards Vaasa expect bright sun this morning; there’s some cloud cover in the south east, and extending into central Finland as well. Temperatures are warmest in Hanko at +15°C and coolest in the north west of Lapland at just +6°C. Autumn is coming.

Finnish Meteorological Institute forecast for Monday morning 27th August 2018 / Credit: FMI