Selection: Immigration could threaten support for the welfare state

Immigration and Integration Minister Sylvi ListhaugImmigration and Integration Minister Sylvi Listhaug.Photo: Gorm Kallestad / NTB scanpix

– Immigration can challenge the bipartisan support of the welfare state land structure in Norway, says Professor Grete Brochmann.

Professor Grete Brochmann has led the so-called Brochmann 2 committee that has looked at long-term consequences that high immigration may have for the Norwegian welfare system.
– Immigration can challenge the historically developed legitimacy of the welfare state through two important mechanisms, said Brochmann when she presented the committee’s report on Wednesday.
– If it turns out that the model actually works worse in a situation of high immigration, through the labor and welfare policy objectives are not met, the model’s legitimacy comes under pressure.
– Secondly, support for the solidarity solutions is weakened by the economic and social differences as the population increases.
Larger sections of the majority population may eventually want to reserve full access to welfare benefits for the Norwegian-born, or prefer private solutions, she said.
Today’s report is the second on welfare and immigration from the committee headed by Grete Brochmann. The first report came in 2011 and laid the foundation for much of the debate on sustainable immigration policy in Norway in recent years.
– Asylum influx to Norway may have major consequences in several areas of society, such as the welfare model of our state budget and local government finances.
We have to analyze the consequences of making the right moves to secure the Norwegian welfare model.
The work the committee will do is very important, and I therefore look forward to the results of the committee’s work, said Immigration and Integration Minister Sylvi Listhaug when she appointed the committee in December 2015.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today