Finland applies for support due to Microsoft layoffs
Today on 11 March 2016 Finland submitted an application to the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund EGF concerning support because of the layoffs announced by Microsoft last autumn. The application concerns a total of about 2 000 persons who lost their jobs at Microsoft or companies associated with it. The total budget of the application is nine million euros and the area covered comprises the regions of Uusimaa, South-West Finland and Pirkanmaa.
- We wanted to react to the situation rapidly and on all fronts. People laid off from Microsoft have a high level of expertise which we need to get back to benefit the Finnish national economy as soon as possible. EU support will make it possible to offer customised services also for those who are not the first ones to find new employment, says Jari Lindström, Minister of Justice and Employment.
Services well under way
Services for those made redundant from Microsoft were launched immediately after the layoffs started in September 2015. All services have been designed in close and effective cooperation with Microsoft. Training services were organised as joint procurement operations between the State and Microsoft's own support programme Polku. The results seem quite promising: tens of enterprises have been set up by means of support from Microsoft and there has been a great deal of interest in the joint training services.
Several ongoing EGF projects in Finland
Besides Microsoft, there are other EGF projects currently underway in Finland due to extensive redundancies in the past few years at STX Finland, Broadcom and in the software industry in general. Preparations for an application procedure have been initiated due to layoffs at the University of Helsinki and Aalto University.
The EU contribution is 60 per cent, while each country is responsible for providing 40 per cent of the funding. In cases of major structural changes, support is granted from the fund for active employment policy measures, such as different forms of training, education, promotion of mobility, pay subsidies and start-up grants.
Further information on the fund is available at www.egr.fi
Outi Viljamaa, Ministerial Adviser, Ministry of Employment and the Economy, tel. +358 29 50 47982