72% employment rate target not high enough, says Sipilä

Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre) has stated that the government must raise its employment rate target from 72 to 75 per cent.

“We must set an employment rate target that’s at least 75 per cent,” he stated in an interview on YLE TV1 on Saturday, thus echoing the assessment of Vesa Vihriälä, the chief executive of the Research Institute of the Finnish Economy (Etla).

Vihriälä on Saturday stated that 72 per cent must be “the absolute minimum target” if the government is intent on wiping out the sustainability deficit without resorting to additional spending cuts and tax increases.

Sipilä similarly stressed that the country must not be content to rest on its laurels after finding an agreement on the competitiveness pact and the social and health care reform. He also reminded that the government managed to raise the employment rate by 0.6 percentage points in its first and by 0.7 per cent in its second year in office.

“The reforms have to continue. Raising the employment rate is a key objective for us. We’re slightly behind schedule,” he told YLE.

Sipilä also addressed concerns related to the upcoming change of leadership at the Finns Party: “We won’t make any compromises on the government programme. There won’t be any new negotiations,” he stated.

The Finns Party will convene to select its next chairperson in Jyväskylä on 10 June.

Read other news on the city site of Helsinki.

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