Debt crisis priority issue in Swedish election debate

BRUSSELS Austerity policies in Europe, current free trade negotiations between the EU and USA, the climate threat, and the internal market were several of the heated issues addressed when the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise helped organise an election debate with Sweden’s EMPs in Brussels.

The ‘I’ in the TTIP will create a global gold standard

TRANSATLANTIC TRADE Sir, EU and US trade negotiators are meeting this week for the fourth round of negotiations on a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). As the name suggests, our partnership stands on two firm pillars: trade and investment, writes Mr Peter M Robinson, Mr Karsten Dybvad and Mr Urban Bäckström in Financial Times.

Employers shift gears to advance EU

GETTING THE MESSAGE OUT Getting the message out—The Confederation of Swedish Enterprise is currently working flat out for the EU parliamentary elections. Through a series of activities, the organisation is promoting its positive view towards open boarders and freedom of movement.

"The internal market must be allowed to grow"

EU Family business Svalson AB, located in the farthest northern Swedish county of Norrbotten, is a global leader in producing sliding teller or transaction windows. 40% of their production is exported to Europe. ”The internal market has made it much easier for us. Less paperwork and fewer regulations mean we can sell at a lower prices – which is better for our customers and lets us increase sales,” explains Maud Spencer, MD for Svalson AB.

Zero Tariffs between EU and USA – for jobs and growth

TTIP NEGOTIATIONS Chief negotiators in the TTIP free trade agreement between the EU and USA met in Brussels to discuss tariffs on industrial goods and agricultural products. ”We hope these negotiations can agree on zero tariffs for most goods,” write Hans Stråberg, Europe Co-Chair for the Trans-Atlantic Business Dialogue, and Karl-Petter Thorwaldsson, President of the LO (Swedish Trade Union Confederation).


International double taxation a serious problem

COMMENT It´s crucial that the EU and the Member States keep up with the work on eliminating Double Taxation within the Union and worldwide, writes Hussein Abdali, taxexpert, Confederation of Swedish Enterprise.

Business friendly Europe can create jobs and growth

COMMENT The EU Commission recently issued its Communication “For a European industrial renaissance,” which expresses a desire to make Europe more business-friendly. The Communication states this can be done by implementing a series of measures already in place. But, the primary message is how it is vitally important for all member states to understand the necessity of a well-functioning industrial and business base to create growth and jobs, writes Sara Lowemark, the Brussels office.


Quotas a blunt instrument

GENDER EQUALITY Company boards of directors are indeed becoming more equal in gender distribution according to Petra Hedengran, Corporate Governance Manager at Swedish conglomerate Investor. Cautiously optimistic, she states that "promoting diversity is important, and involves both gender and ethnicity, but formal regulation is not the way to go."

Productivity increase when LAS reformed

EMPLOYMENT RIGHTS 2001 amendments to the Swedish Employment Protection Act (LAS) order of termination rules excepting small companies led to increases in labour productivity of 2.5% or more, as reported by economist Carl Magnus Bjuggren in his doctoral thesis.

More difficult recruiting foreign students

SKILLS SUPPLY The Swedish government has made it harder for youth from outside the EU to study and work in the country. Entrepreneur Tommy VeittiKoski Deputy MD for Smartshake AB, wants to see a change. "We’re experiencing high growth and have huge recruitment needs," he says about his company with sales in 50 countries.

140 countries committed to entrepreneurship

GLOBAL Next week we’ll see this years’ edition of Global Entrepreneurship Week. This time there are 140 countries taking part, and the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise has enthusiastically clicked ’Like’. Everyone who arranges an activity linked to entrepreneurship and innovation during the week is welcome to make an appearance under the event’s umbrella – entirely free of charge.


Quota advocates make it too simple

GENDER QUOTAS A series of business representatives and researchers have publically argued that reasoning against legislating gender quotas for company boards are hard to understand. "Companies with gender-mixed boards are governed better and are more profitable than other companies" – is a common argument used by mandatory quota advocates.

When education gets taken for granted

EDUCATION "Lax attitudes among Swedish students; teachers with entirely too low demands." Thus, a female Master’s student at one of Sweden’s larger universities summarises her experiences, writes Mikaela Almerud, expert on tertiary education.

Climate targets vs Industrial policy - can we do both?

EU EU has committed itself to promote the role of industry and its competitiveness. Which target or targets for energy and climate policy should be set – only one for CO2 emissions or do we also need a renewables target? Do we need targets for competitiveness and security of supply? These and other questions were on the table at a seminar in the European Parliament organised by the Swedish Society for Business and Politics (SPN).