Taxes on companies still high in Sweden: study

Despite recent cuts to corporate tax rates, Sweden still taxes companies more than many other countries in Europe, a new study shows..

Taxes on companies still high in Sweden: study

In 2009, Sweden cut corporate taxes from 28 percent to 26.3 percent. However, similar moves by other countries in Europe and the rest of the world have left Sweden looking like a high-tax country for corporations.

According to the KMPG tax consultancy’s Corporate and Indirect Tax Survey 2010, the global average corporate tax rate dropped from 24.03 percent to 23.45 percent.

“The trend is clear, corporate taxes have dropped every year this decade, as long as we’ve been doing this study,” said Helena Robertsson, head of KPMG Sweden’s corporate tax business, in a statement

“The changes are incremental, but over ten years we’re talking about a drop of more than 7 percent.”

Corporate tax rates are an important incentive for attracting foreign investment. According to the survey, 18 European Union (EU) countries have lower corporate tax rates than Sweden.

EU countries with higher corporate tax rates than Sweden include the UK, Germany, and France.

According to Robertsson, many countries in Europe have made up for the loss in corporate tax income by raising other taxes, including value added taxes (VAT) charged to consumers when they make purchases.

“Swedish companies lose millions every year by mishandling VAT, for example. As VAT gets higher, the costs of not handling it correctly becomes all the more expensive,” said Robertsson.

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Denmark suspects two Swedes over explosion at tax authority

Two Swedish citizens are suspected in connection with last week’s explosion at the Danish Tax Agency. One of the two is in police custody.

Denmark suspects two Swedes over explosion at tax authority
Copenhagen Police superintendent Jørgen Bergen Skov addresses the press. Photo: Philip Davali / Ritzau Scanpix

Copenhagen Police superintendent Jørgen Bergen Skov confirmed the arrests to press on Wednesday morning.

“Both individuals are suspected of carrying out the detonation at the Tax Agency,” Skov said.

One man, aged 22, was arrested in Swedish city Malmö on Tuesday and will be extradited to Denmark. Once he reaches Copenhagen he will appear for preliminary court proceedings, which the prosecution will request take place behind closed doors.

Swedish newspaper Kvällsposten reports the 22-year-old has no previous criminal convictions in the country.

The second man, a 23-year-old, is yet to be detained but an international arrest warrant for him has been issued, Skov said.

“During the night, we also searched several addresses in Sweden. We hereby confiscated what we believe to be a car used by the suspects,” he said.

“We have one suspect on the loose, which means we must be careful about what we say, out of consideration for the investigation,” he added.

The superintendent did not add any detail about how police were able to connect the two individuals to the August 6th explosion.

Skov also stressed that police do not believe the tax authority blast to be connected to a similar incident at a police station in Copenhagen’s Nørrebro neighbourhood in the early hours of Saturday.

“There is nothing to suggest (a connection),” he said.