Finnish technology companies experience strong growth abroad
Employment in technology field decreases in Finland
A growing proportion of employees working for Finnish technology companies are employed by the foreign subsidiaries of those companies.
According to a fresh report, nearly half of the employees of the technology industry work in areas of rapidly growing economies and low costs: in Asia, Eastern Europe, and in Central and South America.
In Finland, the number of employees in the field is declining by an estimated 1,000 to 2,000 this year, says Matti Mäenpää, Director-General of Technology Industries of Finland.
In Western Europe and North America, development in the past three years has been largely the same as in Finland: the number of people employed in the sector has declined.
Mäenpää says that Finland should try to disengage from the trend that prevails in Western Europe. He feels that the way to do this would be to invest more in research and development in fields such as data communications, and the machinery and metals industry, in which Finland is still strong.
He noted that research and development investments in the technology industry have remained at about EUR 2.1 billion a year for about five years now.
The number of people working for Finnish technology companies in other countries has increased by 57,000 in the past six years.
Here in Finland, the number of employees has declined by about 14,000 from 2001, and now stands at about 206,000.
Mäenpää is concerned about a prospective shortage of skilled employees in the field in the coming years, as 5,000 to 6,000 of them are retiring from the sector each year.
The electronics and electrical industry passed an important milestone last year, when the number of employees working in foreign subsidiaries (nearly 70,000) exceeded the number of those working for the Finnish parent companies (just over 60,000).
Previously in HS International Edition:
Perlos to shut down Ylöjärvi component factory - 600 jobs on the line (28.4.2005)
Technology Industries of Finland press release (28.4.2005): Fuller order books in technology firms in early 2005 – already over 160,000 staff abroad