Employment Market in Kainuu

Employment Market in Kainuu

The region of Kainuu is located in the centre of Finland and in the surrounds of Lake Oulujärvi, which is known as the “sea of Kainuu”. Kainuu is almost the size of Belgium with 20 197 m2 and its population is just over 73 000 inhabitants, which means only 3,6 inhabitants per square kilometer (2019, Kainuun liito). There are eight municipalities in Kainuu: Kajaani, the province’s capital, Sotkamo, Suomussalmi, Paltamo, Puolanka, Hyrynsalmi and Ristijärvi. The municipalities are especially known for their tourism resorts, activities and events. Sotkamo is well-known for Vuokatti, a winter and summer resort. Hyrynsalmi is known for the Swamp Soccer World Championships held in July and the downhill skiing facilities of Ukkohalla. The virgin forests and clear waters of Kuhmo and Suomussalmi form the beautiful Wild Taiga are well known in Central Europe. Kuhmo is also popular for the world-famous Chamber Music Festival held during the last two weeks of July each year. (kainuu.fi)

Unemployment rates continuously decreasing

The unemployment rate in Kainuu was 8.1% at the end of September 2023. In the country as a whole, the unemployment rate was 9.4%, which is 0.3% higher than a year ago. In the health and social services sector, there is a particular need for doctors, dentists, nurses and personal carers. In addition, there is a shortage of skilled industrial assemblers and protection and security workers as well as machinists and foundry workers, kitchen and catering assistants and service workers, cleaners and sanitation workers. See Employment Bulleting.

Development priorities in the Kainuu region

The development priorities in Kainuu as in the plan until 2035 are: know-how (tourism, technological industry, bioeconomy, sustainable mining), accessibility, wellness, image of the region and internationality (Kainuun liito).

There are about 4140 companies in Kainuu (Kainuun liitto 2021Q1) One in six SMEs in Kainuu have business activities abroad (Newspaper article: yrityisbarometri from Suomen Yrittäjät, Finnvera and työ- ja elinkeinoministeriö, 2019) and 60% of the workforce is employed by SMEs and Microenterprises.

The biggest business clusters in Kainuu are mining, metal industry, tourism and technology.

Mining is an important employer in Kainuu with Terrafame Ltd being the biggest company with about 1.300 employees. In the metal industry Skoda Transtech Ltd is the most important company for the area, but there are other companies like Katera Steel in Renforsin Ranta Business Park, Kajaani. In Renforsin Ranta there are several companies from different industries located.

The tourism sector is growing steadily. The tourist centers in the region are the ski resorts with Vuokatti being the biggest and Paljakka and Ukkohalla. The resorts aim at being an all-year round destination. In the east, in Kuhmo, there is Wild Taiga as a tourism main actor.

The technology sector has companies developing industry solutions. Known companies are Herman IT, IT Center for Science CSC, Critical Force Ltd, Valmet Automation Ltd, CSE Entertainment and Prometec.

Take a look at examples of previous practical training places.


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