Liberals back nuclear power

Sweden's Liberal party presented its own pre-election budget proposals on Wednesday, highlighting a number of remaining differences of opinion within the conservative Alliance.

The Liberals are holding firm on their demand for a rise in the top level of sick pay in 2008 and have called for further development of nuclear power.

“Yes, we still have problems,” said party leader Lars Leijonborg, acknowledging differences of opinion with the other three Alliance members.

While there appear to be possible compromises on tax and benefits, such as the Liberals’ proposal to reduce property tax in 2007 by 4.3 billion kronor, the four parties are far from united on when it comes to energy.

“Reality is our best friend – everything indicates that nuclear power should be used more,” said Leijonborg.

Another proposal from the Liberals which is lacking support among the rest of the Alliance is to give a billion kronor to a “Nobel university” to raise a Swedish university to the top of world rankings.

The party also wants greater investment in integration policies and an equality bonus in parental benefits.

According to the Liberals, their budget proposals would save 7.6 billion kronor in 2007 and 5.5 billion kronor in 2008 compared to the government’s own budget.