Country Information Database


Sweden Country Information

Flag of Sweden
Map of Sweden
Introduction Sweden
A military power during the 17th century, Sweden has not participated in any war in almost two centuries. An armed neutrality was preserved in both World Wars. Sweden's long-successful economic formula of a capitalist system interlarded with substantial welfare elements was challenged in the 1990s by high unemployment and in 2000-02 by the global economic downturn, but fiscal discipline over the past several years has allowed the country to weather economic vagaries. Sweden joined the EU in 1995, but the public rejected the introduction of the euro in a 2003 referendum.
Geography Sweden
Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, Kattegat, and Skagerrak, between Finland and Norway
Geographic coordinates:
62 00 N, 15 00 E
Map references:
total: 449,964 sq km
land: 410,934 sq km
water: 39,030 sq km
Area - comparative:
slightly larger than California
Land boundaries:
total: 2,233 km
border countries: Finland 614 km, Norway 1,619 km
3,218 km
Maritime claims:
territorial sea: 12 nm (adjustments made to return a portion of straits to high seas)
exclusive economic zone: agreed boundaries or midlines
continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
temperate in south with cold, cloudy winters and cool, partly cloudy summers; subarctic in north
mostly flat or gently rolling lowlands; mountains in west
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: reclaimed bay of Lake Hammarsjon, near Kristianstad -2.41 m
highest point: Kebnekaise 2,111 m
Natural resources:
iron ore, copper, lead, zinc, gold, silver, tungsten, uranium, arsenic, feldspar, timber, hydropower
Land use:
arable land: 5.93%
permanent crops: 0.01%
other: 94.06% (2005)
Irrigated land:
1,150 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources:
179 cu km (2005)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
total: 2.68 cu km/yr (37%/54%/9%)
per capita: 296 cu m/yr (2002)
Natural hazards:
ice floes in the surrounding waters, especially in the Gulf of Bothnia, can interfere with maritime traffic
Environment - current issues:
acid rain damage to soils and lakes; pollution of the North Sea and the Baltic Sea
Environment - international agreements:
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - note:
strategic location along Danish Straits linking Baltic and North Seas
People Sweden
9,045,389 (July 2008 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years: 16% (male 745,110/female 703,857)
15-64 years: 65.6% (male 3,008,148/female 2,928,930)
65 years and over: 18.3% (male 729,500/female 929,844) (2008 est.)
Median age:
total: 41.3 years
male: 40.2 years
female: 42.4 years (2008 est.)
Population growth rate:
0.157% (2008 est.)
Birth rate:
10.15 births/1,000 population (2008 est.)
Death rate:
10.24 deaths/1,000 population (2008 est.)
Net migration rate:
1.66 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2008 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2008 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
total: 2.75 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 2.91 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 2.58 deaths/1,000 live births (2008 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 80.74 years
male: 78.49 years
female: 83.13 years (2008 est.)
Total fertility rate:
1.67 children born/woman (2008 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
0.1% (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
3,600 (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
fewer than 100 (2003 est.)
noun: Swede(s)
adjective: Swedish
Ethnic groups:
indigenous population: Swedes with Finnish and Sami minorities; foreign-born or first-generation immigrants: Finns, Yugoslavs, Danes, Norwegians, Greeks, Turks
Lutheran 87%, other (includes Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Baptist, Muslim, Jewish, and Buddhist) 13%
Swedish, small Sami- and Finnish-speaking minorities
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99%
male: 99%
female: 99% (2003 est.)
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 16 years
male: 15 years
female: 17 years (2006)
Education expenditures:
7.1% of GDP (2005)
Government Sweden
Country name:
conventional long form: Kingdom of Sweden
conventional short form: Sweden
local long form: Konungariket Sverige
local short form: Sverige
Government type:
constitutional monarchy
name: Stockholm
geographic coordinates: 59 20 N, 18 03 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions:
21 counties (lan, singular and plural); Blekinge, Dalarnas, Gavleborgs, Gotlands, Hallands, Jamtlands, Jonkopings, Kalmar, Kronobergs, Norrbottens, Orebro, Ostergotlands, Skane, Sodermanlands, Stockholm, Uppsala, Varmlands, Vasterbottens, Vasternorrlands, Vastmanlands, Vastra Gotalands
6 June 1523 (Gustav VASA elected king)
National holiday:
Swedish Flag Day, 6 June (1916); National Day, 6 June (1983)
1 January 1975
Legal system:
civil law system influenced by customary law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: King CARL XVI GUSTAF (since 19 September 1973); Heir Apparent Princess VICTORIA Ingrid Alice Desiree, daughter of the monarch (born 14 July 1977)
head of government: Prime Minister Fredrik REINFELDT (since 5 October 2006)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the prime minister
elections: the monarchy is hereditary; following legislative elections, the prime minister is elected by the parliament; election last held on 17 September 2006 (next to be held in September 2010)
election results: Fredrik REINFELDT elected prime minister with 175 out of 349 votes
Legislative branch:
unicameral Parliament or Riksdag (349 seats; members are elected by popular vote on a proportional representation basis to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held on 17 September 2006 (next to be held in September 2010)
election results: percent of vote by party - Social Democrats 37.2%, Moderates 27.8%, Center Party 8.3%, Liberal People's Party 8.0%, Christian Democrats 6.9%, Left Party 6.3%, Greens 5.4%; seats by party - Social Democrats 130, Moderates 97, Center Party 29, Liberal People's Party 28, Christian Democrats 24, Left Party 22, Greens 19
Judicial branch:
Supreme Court or Hogsta Domstolen (judges are appointed by the prime minister and the cabinet)
Political parties and leaders:
Center Party [Maud OLOFSSON]; Christian Democratic Party [Goran HAGGLUND]; Environment Party the Greens [no formal leader but party spokespersons are Maria WETTERSTRAND and Peter ERIKSSON]; Left Party or V (formerly Communist) [Lars OHLY]; Liberal People's Party [Jan BJORKLUND]; Moderate Party (conservative) [Fredrik REINFELDT]; Social Democratic Party [Mona SAHLIN]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Children's Rights in Society; Central Association of Salarited Emplyees or TCO; Swedish Federation of Trade Unions or LO
other: media
International organization participation:
ADB (nonregional members), AfDB (nonregional members), Arctic Council, Australia Group, BIS, CBSS, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, ESA, EU, FAO, G-9, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, MINURCAT, NAM (guest), NC, NEA, NIB, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, PFP, Schengen Convention, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMEE, UNMIL, UNMIS, UNMOGIP, UNOMIG, UNRWA, UNTSO, UPU, WCO, WEU (observer), WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Jonas HAFSTROM
chancery: 2900 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 467-2600
FAX: [1] (202) 467-2699
consulate(s) general: Chicago, Los Angeles, New York
Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Michael M. WOOD
embassy: Dag Hammarskjolds Vag 31, SE-11589 Stockholm
mailing address: American Embassy Stockholm, US Department of State, 5750 Stockholm Place, Washington, DC 20521-5750
telephone: [46] (08) 783 53 00
FAX: [46] (08) 661 19 64
Flag description:
blue with a golden yellow cross extending to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag)
Economy Sweden
Economy - overview:
Aided by peace and neutrality for the whole of the 20th century, Sweden has achieved an enviable standard of living under a mixed system of high-tech capitalism and extensive welfare benefits. It has 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. Privately owned firms account for about 90% of industrial output, of which the engineering sector accounts for 50% of output and exports. Agriculture accounts for only 1% of GDP and 2% of employment. Sweden is in the midst of a sustained economic upswing, boosted by increased domestic demand and strong exports. This and robust finances have offered the center-right government considerable scope to implement its reform program aimed at increasing employment, reducing welfare dependence, and streamlining the state's role in the economy. The govenment plans to sell $31 billion in state assets during the next three years to further stimulate growth and raise revenue to pay down the federal debt. In September 2003, Swedish voters turned down entry into the euro system concerned about the impact on the economy and sovereignty.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$338.5 billion (2007 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):
$455.3 billion (2007 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
2.7% (2007 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$37,500 (2007 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 1.5%
industry: 28.8%
services: 69.7% (2007 est.)
Labor force:
4.839 million (2007 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 2%
industry: 24%
services: 74% (2000 est.)
Unemployment rate:
6.1% (2007 est.)
Population below poverty line:
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 3.6%
highest 10%: 22.2% (2000)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
23 (2005)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
2.2% (2007 est.)
Investment (gross fixed):
19% of GDP (2007 est.)
revenues: $249.1 billion
expenditures: $233.5 billion (2007 est.)
Public debt:
41.7% of GDP (2007 est.)
Agriculture - products:
barley, wheat, sugar beets; meat, milk
iron and steel, precision equipment (bearings, radio and telephone parts, armaments), wood pulp and paper products, processed foods, motor vehicles
Industrial production growth rate:
3% (2007 est.)
Electricity - production:
153.2 billion kWh (2005)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 4%
hydro: 50.8%
nuclear: 43%
other: 2.3% (2001)
Electricity - consumption:
134.1 billion kWh (2005)
Electricity - exports:
21.97 billion kWh (2005)
Electricity - imports:
14.58 billion kWh (2005)
Oil - production:
2,350 bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil - consumption:
363,200 bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil - exports:
231,100 bbl/day (2004)
Oil - imports:
580,600 bbl/day (2004)
Oil - proved reserves:
0 bbl (1 January 2006 est.)
Natural gas - production:
0 cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
893.9 million cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - imports:
893.9 million cu m (2005)
Natural gas - proved reserves:
0 cu m (1 January 2006 est.)
Current account balance:
$37.97 billion (2007 est.)
$170.1 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.)
Exports - commodities:
machinery 35%, motor vehicles, paper products, pulp and wood, iron and steel products, chemicals
Exports - partners:
Germany 10.4%, Norway 9.4%, US 7.6%, Denmark 7.4%, UK 7.1%, Finland 6.4%, Netherlands 5.1%, France 5%, Belgium 4.6% (2007)
$151.4 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.)
Imports - commodities:
machinery, petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, motor vehicles, iron and steel; foodstuffs, clothing
Imports - partners:
Germany 18.4%, Denmark 9.2%, Norway 8.3%, UK 6.8%, Finland 6.1%, Netherlands 5.8%, France 5%, China 4.3%, Belgium 4.1% (2007)
Economic aid - donor:
ODA, $3.955 billion (2006)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$31.04 billion (2006 est.)
Debt - external:
$598.2 billion (30 June 2006)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$216.6 billion (2007 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$261.5 billion (2007 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares:
$403.9 billion (2005)
Currency (code):
Swedish krona (SEK)
Currency code:
Exchange rates:
Swedish kronor per US dollar - 6.7629 (2007), 7.3731 (2006), 7.4731 (2005), 7.3489 (2004), 8.0863 (2003)
Fiscal year:
calendar year
Communications Sweden
Telephones - main lines in use:
5.506 million (2007)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
10.371 million (2007)
Telephone system:
general assessment: highly developed telecommunications infrastructure; ranked among leading countries for fixed-line, mobile-cellular, Internet and broadband penetration
domestic: coaxial and multiconductor cables carry most of the voice traffic; parallel microwave radio relay systems carry some additional telephone channels
international: country code - 46; submarine cables provide links to other Nordic countries and Europe; satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean), 1 Eutelsat, and 1 Inmarsat (Atlantic and Indian Ocean regions); note - Sweden shares the Inmarsat earth station with the other Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, and Norway)
Radio broadcast stations:
AM 1, FM 265, shortwave 1 (1998)
8.25 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
169 (plus 1,299 repeaters) (1995)
4.6 million (1997)
Internet country code:
Internet hosts:
3.318 million (2007)
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
29 (2000)
Internet users:
7 million (2007)
Transportation Sweden
250 (2007)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 152
over 3,047 m: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 12
1,524 to 2,437 m: 75
914 to 1,523 m: 24
under 914 m: 38 (2007)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 98
914 to 1,523 m: 6
under 914 m: 92 (2007)
2 (2007)
gas 798 km (2007)
total: 11,528 km
standard gauge: 11,528 km 1.435-m gauge (7,527 km electrified) (2006)
total: 425,300 km
paved: 139,300 km (includes 1,740 km of expressways)
unpaved: 286,000 km (2008)
2,052 km (2005)
Merchant marine:
total: 195 ships (1000 GRT or over) 3,987,610 GRT/2,374,430 DWT
by type: bulk carrier 6, cargo 23, carrier 1, chemical tanker 47, passenger 4, passenger/cargo 36, petroleum tanker 15, roll on/roll off 37, specialized tanker 3, vehicle carrier 23
foreign-owned: 40 (Denmark 4, Estonia 3, Finland 12, Germany 4, Italy 8, Norway 7, UK 2)
registered in other countries: 201 (Antigua and Barbuda 1, Bahamas 4, Barbados 7, Bermuda 20, Cook Islands 9, Cyprus 2, Denmark 4, Finland 2, France 9, Germany 1, Gibraltar 12, Isle of Man 2, Italy 1, Liberia 10, Malaysia 3, Malta 2, Marshall Islands 1, Netherlands 27, Netherlands Antilles 1, Norway 30, Panama 6, Portugal 3, Singapore 19, St Vincent and the Grenadines 2, Tuvalu 1, UK 17, US 5) (2008)
Ports and terminals:
Brofjorden, Goteborg, Helsingborg, Lulea, Malmo, Stenungsund, Stockholm, Trelleborg, Visby
Military Sweden
Military branches:
Swedish Armed Forces (Forsvarsmakten): Army (Armen), Royal Swedish Navy (Marinen), Swedish Air Force (Svenska Flygvapnet) (2008)
Military service age and obligation:
19 years of age for compulsory military service; conscript service obligation: 7-15 months (Navy), 8-12 months (Air Force); after completing initial service, soldiers have a reserve commitment until age 47 (2006)
Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 2,052,890
females age 16-49: 1,980,550 (2008 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 1,699,115
females age 16-49: 1,637,868 (2008 est.)
Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 64,605
female: 61,110 (2008 est.)
Military expenditures:
1.5% of GDP (2005 est.)
Transnational Issues Sweden
Disputes - international:

This page was last updated on 2 October, 2008 Access Time: Tue, 26 Sep 2023 03:06:35 +0000