Centre Party goes young and green

The Centre Party has positioned itself within the conservative alliance as the young, green option with a special package designed to boost youth employment and more investment in environmental jobs.

“We want to increase the opportunities for young people, invest in green jobs and a revitalised countryside,” said party leader Maud Olofsson as she presented her party’s budget proposals.

The Centre Party is sticking to its controversial suggestion for a special labour agreement for young people, with reduced employment rights and a bonus to intermediaries who put young people in jobs.

The package also includes a proposal to remove the ‘free’ part of the study loan, which costs 100 million kronor per year, and rise of 200 kronor of the contribution part, which would increase costs by 570 million kronor.

In addition, the party is proposing that all college students should have the right to a term of work experience while receiving study benefits.

In terms of commerce, the Centre Party wants a billion kronor to be spent on the environment, creating “a better climate and new jobs”. The cash would come from the three billion kronor tax subsidy on Swedish-produced diesel fuel, which the party argues does not benefit the environment in proportion to the cost.

Private individuals who want to buy a ‘green car’ will be given a 10,000 kronor tax break, while the scrap premium on old cars will be raised from 1,700 kronor to 4,000 kronor for a limited time.

Like the government, the Centre Party is aiming for a 1% aid contribution in 2007, but wants 300 million kronor set aside for environmental causes next year, and 1.1 billion kronor the year after.

TT/The Local