Norway: Oslo mayor welcomes immigrant boom
Oslo’s mayor Fabian Stang has said he is unconcerned by statistics showing that immigrants will make up half of Oslo’s population three decades from now.
His reaction stood in stark contrast to that of Progress Party leader Siv Jensen, who immediately called for tighter restrictions on immigration when Statistics Norway published its projections on Tuesday.
“No, I’m not concerned,” Stang told news agency NTB. “But the high number shows that we’ll have a major task integrating immigrants. It’s up to parliament and the government to decide how many people will move to the country. Our job is to integrate them.”
The mayor pointed out that 2040 remains a distant point in time: by then, many immigrants will have lived in Norway for almost 100 years.
“It’s an interesting question as to how long one should be considered an immigrant. For me, the most important thing is to be able to provide all immigrants with the best possible schools so they can receive a good education and get a job. It’s then of lesser importance what skin colour, religion or sexual orientation one has,” said Stand.
In 2040, 70 percent of the Norwegian capital’s first and second generation immigrants will have their roots in countries outside the 30-member European Economic Area, Statistics Norway said.
The study, the first ever projection of immigration trends to be published in Norway, shows that the largest cities will also see the biggest upsurge in immigrant numbers.
Immigrants are defined in the statistics as either people who have either moved to Norway from another country, or the Norway-born children of two first-generation immigrants. (via The Local)