Study: Of the Scandinavian countries, Sweden struggles the most to get migrants to work

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A new study conducted by Professor Emeritus in Economics Lars Calmsfors has revealed that Sweden – compared to Norway, Denmark, and Finland – has the most difficulty integrating newly arrived migrants into the labor force.

In the study, Professor Calmsfors notes that one of the central problems with getting newly arrived migrants to work is that most are unskilled or low-skilled workers, and the hurdles for entry into the unskilled or low-skilled occupations is substantially higher for them, Swedish broadcaster Sveriges Radio reports.

“It is an obstacle in Sweden that we have a high minimum wage. This then applies to retail and hotels and restaurants where many low-skilled people can get a job,” Professor Calmfors pointed out, adding, “I think we would also need a lower minimum wage.

Then one could try to do it in such a way that one does not lower the minimum wage in general, but one tries to construct new types of low-qualified jobs that can simply be paid less.” 

The Germans have endeavored to implement a similar program in which the government subsidized so-called one euro per hour job, with the goal of putting 100,000 migrants to work. Unfortunately, the program has been less than successful.