Future expectations vary greatly between regions, sectors and companies
There are major differences between regions, sectors and companies concerning future expectations. Some regions anticipate a slowdown in growth, but others already see positive signs emerging in the future. These are the conclusions from the recently published Regional Development Prospects.
Prospects of business and industry are mostly positive or unchanged
Over the next six months, the outlook for business and industry is expected to be positive in 23 sub-regional units and negative in five sub-regional units. More than half of the sub-regional units expect the situation to remain unchanged. However, estimates of growth in a 12-month period were significantly more upbeat.
Companies have adapted well
Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine, which has continued for more than a year, causes uncertainty in the international economy and weakens the operating environment for many companies and sectors. According to the regional estimates, companies have been able to adapt to the circumstances well, and the effects of Russia’s invasion have been less harmful than expected. Finland’s membership in NATO is also considered a stabilising factor in the economic operating environment.
Green transition boosts economic prospects
Positive expectations in the regions are largely driven by the investments in the green transition. A large number of wind and solar power projects are pending or underway in different parts of the country, and there are great expectations concerning the planned green hydrogen investments. Farms are actively investing in biogas and solar energy.
Availability of labour remains a problem
The challenges related to the availability of labour continue to worsen and many parts of the country suffer from labour shortages. Along with the health and social services sector where labour shortages have been common for a long time, availability of labour has become a problem in industry, agriculture, services and construction too.
Despite the crises, there has been a favourable trend in employment. However, this trend has recently started to slow in different parts of the country. Demand for labour remains strong, but the ongoing economic uncertainty will weaken this demand in the near future. Unemployment is expected to fall in 12 sub-regional units over the next six months and in 36 sub-regional units in a year’s time.
What is Regional Development Prospects?
Regional Development Prospects is a biannual review produced by the Centres for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment (ELY Centres) and other regional developers on the current situation and short-term prospects in the regions. It is a qualitative review that focuses on the views of regional developers and those working with business development. In addition to a summary, the review includes sections on each region. The review includes assessments on business and industry, the rate and structure of unemployment, and the availability of skilled labour. The review was conducted in April this year.
Sofia Tuovinen, Special Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs, tel. +358 29 516 0993
Jouko Nieminen, Strategy Director, Development and Administration Centre for the ELY Centres and TE Offices, tel. +358 29 502 2769
Satu Tolonen, Senior Specialist, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 504 7354