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While government policy has actively promoted high-tech industries, other sectors seem to have been left out. They credit Israeli chutzpah, an almost untranslatable word meaning gall, audacity and guts or bold arrogance, depending on the context. However, Israel should not sit on its laurels either, since innovation is an ongoing enterprise.

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A golden opportunity to put future growth on a socially sustainable footing. Turning the tide towards inclusiveness. Sweden has achieved a high standard of living under a mixed system of high-tech capitalism and extensive welfare benefits. Sweden has the second highest total tax revenue behind Denmark, as a share of the country's income.

As of [update] , total tax revenue was In the 19th century Sweden evolved from a largely agricultural economy into the beginnings of an industrialized, urbanized country.

NZ’s economy maybe not as hot as we’re being told

Poverty was still widespread. However, incomes were sufficiently high to finance emigration to distant places, prompting a large portion of the country to leave, especially to the United States. Economic reforms and the creation of a modern economic system, banks and corporations were enacted during the later half of the 19th century. During that time Sweden was in a way the "powerhouse" of the Scandinavian region with a strong industrialization process commencing in the s.

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Moreover, the Swedish Riksdag had developed into a very active Parliament already during the "Era of Liberty" —72 , and this tradition continued into the nineteenth century, laying the basis for the transition towards modern democracy at the end of said century. Apart from relatively high levels of human capital formation, the result of the Reformation and related government policies, such local democratic traditions were the other asset that made the "catching up" of the Scandinavian countries, including Sweden, possible and this economic rise was probably the most remarkable phenomenon in that region during the nineteenth century.

By the s, Sweden had what Life magazine called in the "world's highest standard of living". Beginning in the s and culminating with the deep recession of the early s, Swedish standards of living developed less favorably than many other industrialized countries. Since the mids the economic performance has improved.

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In , Sweden had the world's tenth highest GDP per capita in nominal terms and was in 14th place in terms of purchasing power parity. Sweden has had an economic model in the post- World War II era characterized by close cooperation between the government, labour unions, and corporations. A restructuring of the tax system, in order to emphasize low inflation combined with an international economic slowdown in the early s, caused the bubble to burst. According to an analysis published in Computer Sweden in , the investment level decreased drastically for information technology and computing equipment, except in the financial and banking sector, the part of the industry that created the crisis.

A real estate boom ended in a bust. This was known colloquially as the "Stockholm Solution". In , the United States Federal Reserve noted, "In the early s, Sweden had one of the highest income levels in Europe; today, its lead has all but disappeared So, even well-managed financial crises don't really have a happy ending".


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The welfare system that had been growing rapidly since the s could not be sustained with a falling GDP, lower employment and larger welfare payments. The response of the government was to cut spending and institute a multitude of reforms to improve Sweden's competitiveness. When the international economic outlook improved combined with a rapid growth in the IT sector, which Sweden was well positioned to capitalize on, the country was able to emerge from the crisis. The crisis of the s was by some viewed as the end of the much buzzed welfare model called "Svenska modellen", literally "The Swedish Model", as it proved that governmental spending at the levels previously experienced in Sweden was not long term sustainable in a global open economy.

However, the reforms enacted during the s seem to have created a model in which extensive welfare benefits can be maintained in a global economy. The following table shows the main economic indicators in — Sweden is an export-oriented mixed economy featuring a modern distribution system, excellent internal and external communications, and a skilled labor force. Timber, hydropower and iron ore constitute the resource base of an economy heavily oriented toward foreign trade.

Telecommunications, the automotive industry and the pharmaceutical industries are also of great importance. Agriculture accounts for 2 percent of GDP and employment. The slowly declining overall taxation, Civil servants amount to a third of Swedish workforce, multiple times the proportion in many other countries. Overall, GDP growth has been fast since reforms in the early s, especially in manufacturing. World Economic Forum — competitiveness index ranks Sweden 4th most competitive. The book compiled an index to measure the kind of creativity it claims is most useful to business — talent, technology and tolerance.

According to Economic Survey of Sweden by OECD, the average inflation in Sweden has been one of the lowest among European countries since the mids, largely because of deregulation and quick utilization of globalization. The Swedish economic picture has brightened significantly since the severe recession in the early s.

Growth has been strong in recent years, and even though the growth in the economy slackened between and , the growth rate has picked up since with an average growth rate of 3. The long-run prospects for growth remain favorable. The inflation rate is low and stable, with projections for continued low levels over the next 2—3 years. Since the mids the export sector has been booming, acting as the main engine for economic growth.

Swedish exports also have proven to be surprisingly robust. A marked shift in the structure of the exports, where services, the IT industry, and telecommunications have taken over from traditional industries such as steel, paper and pulp , has made the Swedish export sector less vulnerable to international fluctuations. However, at the same time the Swedish industry has received less money for its exports while the import prices have gone up.

By , legislators, economists and the IMF were warning of a bubble with residential property prices soaring and the level of personal mortgage debt expanding. In the last decade, from to present, the government has run a surplus every year, except for and From the perspective of longer term fiscal sustainability , the long-awaited reform of old-age pensions entered into force in Taken together, both fiscal consolidation and pension reform have brought public finances back on a sustainable footing.

Current economic development reflects a quite remarkable improvement of the Swedish economy since the crisis in —93, so that Sweden could easily qualify for membership in the third phase of the Economic and Monetary Union of the European Union , adopting the euro as its currency. In theory, by the rules of the EMU, Sweden is obliged to join, since the country has not obtained exception by any protocol or treaty as opposed to Denmark and the United Kingdom. Nevertheless, the Swedish government decided in against joining the common currency from its start on 1 January This choice was implemented by exploiting a legal loophole, deliberately staying out of the European Exchange Rate Mechanism.

In the first years of the twenty-first century, a majority for joining emerged in the governing Social Democratic party, although the question was subject of heated debate, with leading personalities in the party on both sides. On 14 September , a national referendum was held on the euro.


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  6. During employment rose by 90, people, the greatest increase in 40 years, and the goal was reached in the autumn of The same autumn the government set out its new target: Some have expressed concern that meeting the employment target may come at a cost of too high a rate of wage increases hence increasing inflation.

    According to Jan Edling , a former trade-unionist, the actual number of unemployed is far higher, and those figures are being suppressed by both the government and the Swedish Trade Union Confederation.

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    He also claimed a further , Swedes are either on long-term sick leave or in early retirement. Edling asks how many of these people are in fact unemployed. According to Swedish Statistics, unemployment in June was 9. Around seventy percent of the Swedish labour force is unionised. The unions and employer organisations are independent of both the government and political parties, although the largest confederation of unions, the National Swedish Confederation of Trade Unions or LO organising blue-collar workers , maintains close links to one of the two major parties, the Social Democrats.

    The unionisation rate among white-collar workers is exceptionally high in Sweden — since higher than for blue-collar workers. There are two major confederations that organise professionals and other qualified employees: They are both independent from Sweden's political parties and never endorse candidates for office in political elections. There is no minimum wage that is required by legislation. Instead, minimum wage standards in different sectors are normally set by collective bargaining. This reflects the dominance of self-regulation regulation by the labour market parties themselves over state regulation in Swedish industrial relations.

    When the issue was at the agenda, the Swedish union movement was very split. The traditionally low wage differential has increased in recent years as a result of increased flexibility as the role of wage setting at the company level has strengthened somewhat.