Annual report of the Employment Fund, 2019

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Managing Director’s review

The Fund’s first year in operation involved constant renewal

The Fund’s new organisation was confirmed in early 2019. The Employment Fund was created by the merger of the Unemployment Insurance Fund and the Education Fund. The merger required a lot of work and long-term preparation, and the personnel of the funds played a key role. We spent the year laying the foundation for our operations and driving forward several development projects related to our statutory duties and targets derived from our strategy.

Work on the Incomes Register was done throughout the fund

The Employment Fund’s operations began at pace, as the merger coincided with
the introduction of the Incomes Register for assessing unemployment insurance contributions – a new approach that had been long in preparation. A new information system and customer-facing service for unemployment insurance contributions were deployed from the start of the year.

A new model based on actual earnings was introduced for assessing and invoicing for unemployment insurance contributions, and the model proved extremely popular. In the future, the Fund will need to consider whether it will continue offering the prepayment model, which is very rarely used.

Managing Director Janne Metsämäki.

JANNE METSÄMÄKI
Managing Director

Key figures for 2019

Unemployment insurance contributions collected

EUR million

Adult education benefits paid

EUR million

Contributions to Kela
for persons not covered
by unemployment funds

EUR million

Contributions to
unemployment
funds

EUR million

Contributions from the pension cover of persons receiving earnings-related benefits

EUR million

Highlights of 2019

A new fund, a new strategy, a new organisation

We began operating on 1 January 2019 when the Unemployment Insurance Fund and the Education Fund were merged. The merger sought to create a strong, efficient fund to handle the financing of unemployment allowances and the realisation of adult education benefits. We want to provide security throughout the changes in working life and serve all of our customers well: employees, employers and recipients of adult education benefits.

The Incomes Register was a giant digital step

The Employment Fund was among the first four organisations to begin using the national Incomes Register. From the very beginning of 2019, the Employment Fund began using the data on the Incomes Register to assess and invoice for unemployment insurance contributions. Preparations were made for the next step throughout the year: on 1 January 2020, we began using the data on the Incomes Register for granting adult education allowances.

A record year for the popularity of adult education allowances

People are clearly interested in enhancing their expertise once they have embarked on a career. The number of recipients of adult education allowances has been increasing for several years. And 2019 was a record year! 25,701 people received adult education allowances in 2019.

Long-term debts repaid

In 2015, the Unemployment Insurance Fund, as it was then known, borrowed money on the capital market in order to offset the increased expenditure on unemployment allowances due to a rise in unemployment. The last EUR 600 million of this bond was repaid in autumn 2019, and the Employment Fund no longer has any long-term debt.

Unemployment insurance contributions could be lowered

The improved employment situation in Finland enabled overall unemployment insurance contributions to be lowered for 2020. We reduced the total insurance contribution by an average of 0.49%.