Good progress has been made in processing the seasonal work applications

18.6.2020 13.49
Press release

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, berry and vegetable farms and fields in Finland may now receive 9,000 seasonal workers from outside the European Union. The Finnish Immigration Service has granted a permit for approximately 8,700 seasonal workers.

As in recent years, companies in the sector have employed seasonal workers, mainly from Ukraine. The majority of seasonal workers come to Finland for a short period in the summer. They apply for a certificate for seasonal work, which enables them to work in Finland for 90 days. Those who work longer apply for a seasonal worker’s residence permit.

This year, approximately 9,270 seasonal work certificate requests and approximately 1,185 seasonal workers’ residence permit applications have been submitted in total. A decision has been made on approximately 7,485 certificate requests and approximately 1,385 residence permit applications in total. 

There are approximately 1,500 seasonal workers waiting for a decision on their application.

The coronavirus pandemic limits the number of seasonal workers arriving in Finland

Based on information received from companies, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry granted 1,500 seasonal workers who met the requirements permission in April to enter the country during the first phase. According to the Government policy, 3,000 seasonal workers received permission to arrive starting from 14 May, with an additional 4,500 coming after 1 June. Therefore, 9,000 seasonal workers in total may now arrive in Finland. 

The Finnish Immigration Service processes the applications in the order they are submitted. The time when the employment relationship starts is also taken into account in the decision-making.  

‘We try to process the applications further based on both the time when they were submitted and the time when the work will start. All applications by seasonal workers are treated as urgent. In this way, we want to ensure that the workers can start working on the farms on time,’ says Head of Section Tuuli Huhtilainen. 

The Border Guard monitors the number of seasonal workers who have arrived in the country and makes the decision on their entry into the country. According to the Border Guard, approximately 2 400 seasonal workers have now arrived in Finland. 

Automation speeds up processing

This year, partial automation is used in the processing of seasonal work certificates. The applications are largely submitted automatically. A part of the checks included in the processing have also been automated.

Further information for the media

  • Tuuli Huhtilainen, Head of Section, Immigration Unit, email: [email protected], tel. +358 295 433 037