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Sweden's Alliance reveals full manifesto

The Local · 1 Sep 2014, 10:13

Published: 01 Sep 2014 10:13 GMT+02:00

With just under two weeks to go until Sweden's general election, the four leaders of the country's governing Alliance took a boat trip to the Finnboda Shipyard in Nacka just outside Stockholm on Monday morning, where they explained how they planned to rule Sweden if they're voted in for a third term.

Education reforms including smaller class sizes were top of the agenda alongside plans to create 50, 000 jobs and build new homes in Sweden's cities. 

Sweden's elections - how do they work?

Prime Minister and Moderate Party leader Fredrik Reinfeldt, Annie Lööf from the Centre Party, Liberal Party leader Jan Björkland and Göran Hägglund from the Christian Democrats all gave speeches before making their full 126-page manifesto available to reporters. It outlines reforms adding up to SEK 9.3 billion for 2015, followed by close to SEK 37 million for the subsequent three years.
 
Here is The Local's guide to the key points:
 
Schools
  • Compulsory schooling for ten years (currently pupils must attend lessons for nine years)
  • Smaller class sizes and more teachers
  • Get Sweden into the top 10 in the international PISA rankings within a decade

Immigration

  • Ensure more councils share responsibility for taking in refugees
  • Enable the Migration Board to run its own accommodation centres
  • Speed up process of getting immigrants established on labour market
  • Make it easier and quicker for employers to recruit foreign workers 
  • Speed up and improve language-learning services
Employment
  • Create 50,000 new jobs including 20,000 in the construction sector
  • Further cuts to social fees for companies who employ staff aged under 23
  • Expand apprenticeship schemes and increase benefits for new apprentices
  • Subsidies for companies that employ staff who have previously been unemployed long-term
  • Cut sick pay costs for employers
  • Increase probationary period in jobs from 6 to 12 months
  • Allow people to go on courses while still claiming unemployment benefits.

Healthcare

  • Raise taxes on alcohol and cigarettes
  • Invest in tackling mental health problems among young people
  • Cut waiting times for cancer care
  • Improve overall quality of service in hospitals
Transport
  • New high-speed rail lines from Stockholm to Gothenburg and Malmö
  • Improve links between Sweden and Denmark
  • No introduction of a per-kilometre road tax for trucks (a policy supported by the Greens and the Left Party)
  • Keep Bromma Airport open 
Housing:
  • Reduce bureaucracy for builders to cut the time between making planning applications and building work getting underway
  • Relax planning rules for student housing and force state-owned company Akademiska Hus to build more student homes
Business
  • Halve the amount of time it takes to start a company in Sweden with incentives including by reducing the amount of capital needed to start a business
  • Introduce a limit on companies' sick-pay liabilities.
Crime
  • Tougher sentencing for offences including murder, violent crimes, drug offences, robbery, human trafficking and paying for sex acts involving children
  • New criminal categories for rape of a particularly violent nature, and for criminal negligence in rape cases
  • Re-examine definition of rape and consider the issue of consent
  • Make it easier to confiscate criminals’ assets.
  • Crack down on the illegal passport trade by making it more difficult and expensive to issue multiple passports

Photo: TT

Read also: 

Sweden's complicated elections and how the Sweden Democrats hold the key

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The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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