4,000 seasonal workers are coming to Lofoten for the fishing season despite record-high unemployment

Lofoten fishingPhoto: Cornelius Poppe / NTB

The Moskenes Municipality in Lofoten has an unemployment rate of 13.5%. Nevertheless, workers are being imported for the fishing season.

These days, up to 4,000 seasonal workers are arriving from Lithuania, Poland, Romania, and other countries in Eastern Europe to contribute to the fishing season, newspaper Klassekampen writes. 

The fishing municipality of Moskenes, almost at the far end of Lofoten, needs 60-70 seasonal workers.

“We need seasonal workers, not to save money, but to receive and process the raw material,” general manager Jonas Walsøe in Berg Seafood in Svolvær noted.

Many inquiries

He has encouraged laid-off people to get in touch and has received many inquiries. 

But many in the industry prefer guest workers, who are willing to work long hours when a lot of raw materials come ashore.

Walsøe pointed out that most people in the fishing industry pay guest workers NOK 190 per hour, which is roughly the same as Norwegian workers would receive.

Steinar Eliassen, the head of the Fish Buyers’ Association, does not rule out that laid-off workers from the tourism industry could do a good job in the fishing industry but reminds that these are jobs that require competence and flexibility.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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