Eleições suecas (3)

Almost all foreign observers - and some Swedish - ask me how radical Sweden´s new government will be. It depends on your comparison. If you compare it to my ideals they are obviously far from it. Don´t expect a liberal revolution. But if you compare it to other governments, my guess is that this government will lead Europe in reform.


The four alliance parties actually won at the peak of the business cycle with a fairly ideological stand for jobs vs welfare benefits. This gives them a strong mandate to reduce benefits and reduce taxes, especially on low incomes. And this gives room to move on with more tax cuts when people move from the welfare rolls to jobs. The taxes on property and estates will be the first to go.

The government will privatise most companies owned by the government, deregulate the product markets, open Sweden for workers from other countries, dismantle the political control of the universities, give parents freedom of choice in child care, open welfare services completely for private alternatives, create more voucher systems and locally they will privatise hospitals. And they will be on the side of deregulation in the EU.

The biggest problem is that the moderates have promised not to touch labour security, which will make their job-creation agenda more difficult. But some smaller reforms of the labour market have been announced and with some luck, after the success in the election, centern can implement the specific deregulated youth contract they have proposed, and if that succeeds it might be followed by more reforms.