Published: 20 June 2018

Average age of second generation immigrants with foreign background 11 years

According to Statistics Finland, the average age of second generation immigrants with foreign background was very low, 10.9 years, in 2017. The average age was the same 10.9 years for both girls and boys. Second generation immigrants with foreign background, i.e. those born in Finland, are still mostly very young. Of them, 84 per cent were underage and nearly one-half were under school-age in 2017.

Age structure of second generation immigrants with foreign background (born in Finland) in 2017

Age structure of second generation immigrants with foreign background (born in Finland) in 2017

Average age of first generation immigrants with foreign background 38 years

The average age of first generation immigrants with foreign background was 38.0 years in 2017. The average age for men was 37.2 years, which is slightly lower than the average age for women, 38.8 years. The average age for the whole population was 42.7 years in 2017 (41.3 years for men and 44.0 years for women). So first generation immigrants with foreign background, i.e. born abroad are slightly younger than the entire population.

Age structure of first generation immigrants with foreign background (born abroad) in 2017

Age structure of first generation immigrants with foreign background (born abroad) in 2017

Every tenth child under school-age is of foreign background

The share of under school-age children (aged 0 to 6) with foreign background was 9.5 per cent at the end of 2017. One in five under school-age children is already of foreign background in Greater Helsinki. For the entire population, the share of persons with foreign background was seven per cent in 2017.

At the end of 2017, there were 86,000 underage persons with foreign background in Finland. Of them, 39 per cent had been born abroad belonging to the first generation and 61 per cent had been born in Finland belonging to the second generation.

Of all people with foreign background, more than one-half lived in Uusimaa. Of second generation immigrants with foreign background, 61 per cent lived in Uusimaa. Examined by municipality, the share of people with foreign background among Mainland Finland municipalities was highest in Vantaa, 18 per cent, and in Espoo and Helsinki, 16 per cent.

Majority of persons with foreign background from highly developed countries

The background countries of persons with foreign background can be divided into four categories based on the Human Development Index (HDI) . The background country is the country of birth of the mother or father, or if it is not known, the person's own country of birth.

The background country of more than one-half of persons with foreign background in the first generation is a country with a very high HDI. The shares of high, medium and low level or unknown countries was roughly the same.

For second generation immigrants with foreign background, a background country with a very high HDI was less common than for the first generation and other HDI categories were slightly larger than for the first generation. Especially the share of low and unknown HDI was higher for second generation than for first generation immigrants with foreign background.

Persons with foreign background by the Human Development Index (HDI) of the background country in 2017, %

Persons with foreign background by the Human Development Index (HDI) of the background country in 2017, %

Eighty-six per cent of persons with Thai background are women

The gender distribution of first generation immigrants with foreign background varies by background country. Among the fifteen largest background countries there was a female majority among persons with Thai, Russian, Chinese and Vietnamese background in 2017. As many as 86 per cent of person with Thai background were women.

The share of men was largest among persons of Turkish, Iraqi and Indian background. Of persons with Turkish background, 69 per cent were men.

Largest groups of first generation immigrants with foreign background by sex in 2017, %

Largest groups of first generation immigrants with foreign background by sex in 2017, %

The gender distribution of second generation immigrants with foreign background based on background country is naturally much more even because they were born in Finland and are not selected in the same way as those of first generation immigrants with foreign background.


Source: Population Structure 2017, Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Marja-Liisa Helminen 029 551 3273, Markus Rapo 029 551 3238, info@stat.fi

Director in charge: Jari Tarkoma

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Updated 20.06.2018

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Population structure [e-publication].
ISSN=1797-5395. Population with foreign background 2017. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 23.7.2018].
Access method: http://www.stat.fi/til/vaerak/2017/02/vaerak_2017_02_2018-06-20_tie_001_en.html

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