On this page you will find descriptive information on the distribution of the population with an immigrant background by region, age structure and gender distribution. The Demographics tab examines the various background variables (citizenship, country of birth, language, origin) that define the population with an immigrant background.
Population with an immigrant background by region
The distribution of the population with an immigrant background varies from region to region within Finland. The regional distribution of the population with an immigrant background according to the origin variable is examined below. According to it, all persons with at least one parent born in Finland have a Finnish background. Persons with a foreign background are those whose both parents or the only known parent was born abroad. Below you will find links to the map visualizations “Population with an immigrant background by province” and “Population with an immigrant background by municipality”. From them, you can view the regional proportions and numbers of people with an immigrant background by origin, as well as other variables - by citizenship, country of birth and language.
In 2019, 423,494 of the Finnish population had a foreign background, or about 8 per cent. Clearly more people with a foreign background than the national average lived in Åland, 15.9 per cent, and Uusimaa, 14.2 per cent. More than half of those with a foreign background lived in Uusimaa. The provinces of Southwest Finland and Ostrobothnia also had a relatively higher proportion of people with a foreign background than the national average. The relatively smallest share of people with a foreign background was in Southern Ostrobothnia, 2.4 per cent.
If the population shares are examined by municipality, in 2019 the share of people with a foreign background was high, especially in many municipalities in Åland, the Helsinki metropolitan area, Närpiö, Korsnäs in Ostrobothnia, Turku and Pietarsaari. In these municipalities, the share of people with a foreign background in the region’s population ranged from 10 percent to 22 percent. Correspondingly, in about 20 municipalities the proportion of people with a foreign background is less than one per cent. Most people with a foreign background live in Helsinki, where a quarter of the entire population with a foreign background lives.
Especially in the 1990s, the first destination for immigration to Finland was Helsinki, from where people with a foreign background have later applied to other parts of the Helsinki metropolitan area. The placement of refugees in municipalities and increased immigration have increased the number of people with a foreign background in other parts of the country. In recent years, the migration of the immigrant population to Uusimaa living elsewhere in Finland has been quite brisk.