Foreign citizens reverse negative voting trend

More foreign citizens voted in the 2006 local elections than at any time since the early 1990s. But electoral participation among non-Swedish citizens remains low, according to Statistics Sweden.

In 2006, 37 percent of foreign passport holders exercised their right to vote. Slightly more women than men headed to the polling stations – 39 percent compared to 35 percent.

When foreign citizens were first allowed to vote in municipal elections in 1976, six out of ten went to the polls. Participation has gradually fallen since then.

The parliamentary elections held at the same time as local elections attracted more first time voters than in 2002.

Almost 76 percent of those eligible to vote for the first time participated in the election. The equivalent figure for 2002 was 70 percent.