Finance Minister presents Sweden’s economic forecast

Swedish Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson
Photo: Kristian Pohl/Government Offices of Sweden

Sweden’s Minister for Finance Magdalena Andersson on Thursday presented the latest economic forecast from the Ministry of Finance and the focus of the budget during the Government’s discussions at Harpsund.

“Sweden is in an entirely different position compared with four years ago. Unemployment has been pushed back, with 300 000 more people in work, we have good growth, and major deficits have been turned into surpluses. We have saved SEK 166 billion and paid off national debt, which will reach its lowest level this year since 1977.

“We have equipped ourselves – both to encounter a weaker situation and to tackle the major tasks that lie ahead. In the next electoral period we will have to prioritise. Dealing with climate change and the fact that Sweden will have 300 000 more older people over the next decade will require major resources. So we cannot afford major tax cuts for those who earn the most,” says Minister for Finance Ms Andersson.

Compared with the last forecast, growth for the current year has been revised upwards by 0.3 percentage points to 2.9 per cent, primarily because GDP growth turned out stronger than expected in the second quarter.

Unemployment is still expected to fall further during the forecast period, to 6.1 per cent. The employment rate remains at its highest level since the early 1990s, and both the employment rate and labour force participation have been revised upwards since the last forecast. The proportion of people who are dependent on sickness insurance, unemployment insurance, introduction benefit or income support is the lowest since 1981 and is expected to continue to fall.

General government net lending has been revised upwards by approximately SEK 10 billion, both for this year and next year.

“In the budget for 2018 we included major reforms, which will be further stepped up in 2019. We continue to take steps to abolish the unfair tax on pensions, and we are making major climate investments and investing SEK 1 billion to reduce disparities in schools,” concludes Ms Andersson.

Swedish Government