Estonians want to work in Finland

  • 2000-09-07
HELSINKI (BNS) - As many as 36 percent of Estonians consider it likely that they will go to work in Finland after Estonia joins the European Union, a poll by Gallup Finland indicates.

Nearly 400,000 residents of Estonia think they would work in Finland for at least some time after regulations allowing free movement of workers between the countries step into effect, the poll shows. The percentage of Estonians ready to seek work in the neighboring country has grown lately. Two years ago only one in four Estonians considered the option likely.

According to the latest poll, every sixth Estonian or 180,000 people in total think they would live in Finland for a longer period.

Most of those considering working in Finland are people under 25, students and unemployed people.

The poll also reveals that Russian-speaking residents of Estonia are more eager to go to work across the border, with 38 percent of Russian-speakers saying they would do so, but only 24 percent of ethnic Estonians.

Of different kinds of jobs, Estonian residents were most interested in sales work (12 percent), followed by service and technical jobs (11 percent).

The poll revealed that 65 percent of Estonian residents do not believe that wages in the country will rise to the level of other EU members after Estonia has joined the union, and that social and economic inequality will deepen further.

The Finns, meanwhile, have a generally positive attitude toward Estonia's entry into EU, with 51 percent of respondents welcoming such a prospect and only 19 percent opposing it.