Swedish Finance Minister: Stockholm made a mistake accepting so many refugees
The Swedish finance minister, Magdalena Andersson, in a Friday interview for the newspaper Dagens Nyheter said that Sweden made a mistake by accepting thousands of asylum seekers in 2015.
It is the first such statement of the politician from the ruling Sweden’s Socialist Working Party, whose coalition government together with the Green Party, welcomed over 163 thousand asylum seekers in 2015.
"The integration [of immigrants] does not go as it should. We had a problem with it before the autumn of 2015 (when Sweden accepted a wave of migrants). For me it is obvious that we cannot accept more asylum seekers than we can integrate. It will not be good either for people who come here or for the whole society," said the Swedish Finance minister Magdalena Andersson.
According to the politician, people who come to Sweden "face a very tense situation" while greater housing and education opportunities exist in other European countries.
"I think these people [immigrants] have a better chance if they seek asylum in another country," Andersson admitted.
The Minister of Finance told the newspaper Dagens Nyheter that her own Social Democratic Workers Party was to blame for the tense situation in Sweden in connection with the admission of immigrants on such a massive scale.
"We have a reason for self-criticism, it should have been clear beforehand that we were not able to accept more people than our country can cope with" - said Magdalena Andersson.
In August 2015, the Swedish Prime Minister, Stefan Löfven said at a rally in Stockholm that Europe “should not build walls”. In November of the same year, as a result of the wave of migration, the Swedish government decided to restore border control and tighten immigration regulations.
When asked what should be done to allow integration of people who obtained the right of residence in Sweden, Magdalena Andersson replied that their entry into the labor market must be faster.
"The children must grow up and see that their parents work. More families must have adequate housing conditions and children should learn what they need at school. There are no other requirements for people who came here than for us who were born in Sweden "- said the Minister of Finance.
The level of unemployment in Sweden among people born in the country is just over 4 percent. Unemployment among people living in Sweden and born in another country reaches 15 percent.