More Swedes in favour of “Systemet”

The number of Swedes in favour of preserving state-owned Systembolaget's monopoly on the sale of alcohol is growing. Sixty percent of Swedes support the monopoly, compared with 55 percent in March this year.

This is the finding of a new survey carried out on behalf of industry organisation Swedish Spirits and Wine Suppliers (SWSS), which itself wants to keep Systembolaget’s monopoly, writes Svenska Dagbladet.

Moderate Party voters account for the largest increase, from 45 percent in March to 52 percent now. Women are more postive towards Systembolaget than men, and high earners are more positive than those on lower salaries. Younger people are more critical of the monopoly than older.

The survey asked the opinions of 1,000 people.

Public Health minister Morgan Johansson believes the increase could be down to people becoming concerned at large increases in illegal sales of alcohol, and therefore learning to appreciate the virtues of the monopoly.

Not so, argues the Moderates’ spokeswoman on alcohol policy, Christina Husmark-Pehrsson. She says that more people are supporting Systembolaget due to ignorance of the alternatives.

In 2003 the average Swede drank 10.3 litres of pure alcohol. Of that, 49 percent came from liquor bought at Systembolaget; the rest was either bought in bars or restaurants or was purchased abroad.

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TT/The Local