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Finnish prime minister calls for four-day workweek

The country’s new 34-year-old prime minister wants this to happen.
Credit: AP
Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin answers questions during an interview with The Associated Press at the end of an EU summit at the European Council headquarters in Brussels, Friday, Dec. 13, 2019. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)

HELSINGBY, Finland — How does a four-day workweek with six-hour working days sound?

Well, if you live in Finland, that could become a reality.

Sanna Marin, the country’s new, 34-year-old prime minister wants this to happen. Marin has called for a test run of the new schedule on the occasion of the 120th anniversary of the Social Democratic Party in Turku.

“I believe people deserve to spend more time with their families, loved ones, hobbies and other aspects of life, such as culture. This could be the next step for us in working life,” Marin said, in a NEW EUROPE report.

Marin took office last month. She has one child and leads a center-left coalition with four other parties, which are all led by women.

Marin advocated for shorter work weeks when she was Finland's minister of transport.

According to The Guardian, shortening the workweek increases productivity. When Microsoft Japan tested the shorter week, employee productivity rose by roughly 40 percent, the publication reported.

"One Melbourne organization found a six-hour working day forced employees to eliminate unproductive activities such as sending pointless emails, sitting in lengthy meetings and cyberloafing (messing around on the internet)," The Guardian explained.

Finland currently has a five-day workweek, and people work eight hours a day.

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