Fully 20 percent of all young workers in Oslo are currently Swedish, according to fresh figures from the independent social economic research foundation Frischsenteret. It reports that the number of job migrants from Sweden has soared 20-fold since 1990, but competition for jobs in Norway has gotten tougher.
You can hear their Swedish, or Swedish accents, in restaurants, hotels, clothing stores and other retail establishments all over the country. Frischsenteret said that the roughly 1,300 Swedes between 17 and 25 years old who worked in Norway in 1990 has since exploded, to more than 28,000 today.
They’re providing tough competition for Norwegian youth in the local job market, not least because they’re often viewed as more service-minded and may be willing to work for less pay than Norwegians. They also have few if any of the language challenges that migrant workers from other countries in Europe have.
“Norwegian and Swedish youth are quite similar and compete for the same jobs,” Bernt Bratsbeg, a senior researcher at Frischsenteret, told newspaper Aftenposten. “When the number of Swedes increases so strongly, it becomes more difficult for Norwegian youth to find part-time jobs and summer jobs.”
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