• Sweden's news in English

Top Swedish execs less keen on the euro

The Local/vt · 27 Dec 2010, 16:00

Published: 27 Dec 2010 16:00 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The euro faced its toughest challenges yet in 2010 with debt-ridden members Greece and Ireland forcing other euro and EU countries to come to the rescue with a massive loan package, newspaper Svenska Dagbladet reported on Monday.

"It is maybe more important for large countries like England to take a position and join so that it becomes a more stable area. It is not good with an unstable currency area," Ericsson Chairman Michael Treschow told the newspaper on Monday.

Treschow underlined however that in the longer term he still believed that Sweden would gain from having a currency that followed "more stable" rules.

As the 16-member currency prepares to welcome its newest member, Estonia, on January 1st, the debt crisis in the eurozone this year has deterred many who were previously positive to Sweden joining the euro.

Many economists believe that the crisis has proved that monetary union is not optimal and predict that poor countries may be forced to leave, the report said.

At the same time, the Swedish economy has rocketed past eurozone growth rates. While Finance Minister Anders Borg has insisted that Sweden would have done well even with the euro as currency, he has not been as proactive as Liberal Party leader Jan Björklund in pushing for a new euro referendum, SvD reported.

Sweden voted against 56.1 percent a 2003 referendum that would have determined accession on January 1st, 2006.

Swedish business leaders do not have a Swedish euro accession on their minds at the moment, with Nordea CEO Christian Clausen stating that Swedish support does not seem to be of immediate importance.

"A new referendum would probably result in a very clear answer from the people," Clausen, a native of Denmark, told SvD.

He added that there is no clear answer as to whether Sweden would be better off in joining the eurozone.

"If one joins the eurozone, there might be a little more leeway - for example, having a slightly larger deficit. However, the problem is that some countries gave themselves too much space," cautioned Clausen.

SEB CEO Annika Falkengren agreed.

Story continues below…

"The crises this year show that one must have a tight fiscal policy given that one does not have the interest rate weapon the same way countries outside the euro do. Sweden has shown that it has fared very well on its own merits on the outside," she said earlier this year.

However, Swedish business leaders remain confident that the euro will survive in the long term.

"Some countries may possibly be forced to leave, but on the whole, it will stay together. I am European and I believe in the project. We live in an open democracy and it takes a bit longer to implement things," Atlas Copco CEO Ronnie Leten, a native of Belgium, told SvD.

"The euro and the dollar are the world's two reserve currencies and there is no doubt that the euro will survive. The question is how long it will take to solve these acute problems," added Clausen.

The Local/vt (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

20:39 December 27, 2010 by lux.veritas
Madame La Guillotine for the thirteen banking families. Those behind the private banks, central banks, for their debt based worthless currencies. Printed out of thin air at no loss to the banks + interest a debt based tax robbery that assures poverty, suffering and wealth transfer to these evil criminals. For if nothing is done by owned politicians and corporations; they will take the very roofs from over our heads and food out of the mouths of our children. youtube search Zeitgeist Addendum: Find out how the top people behind the banksters and their puppets in state and corporation act with their economic terrorism, assasinations, corruption.
00:18 December 28, 2010 by Thebinary1
I think its time to fire Annika Falkengren and Christian Clausen for their incompetence!

"The crises this year show that one must have a tight fiscal policy given that one does not have the interest rate weapon the same way countries outside the euro do." .... so it is Annika's view that in the long-term, interest rates are a redundant monetory weapon for individual Euro countries since that country surrenders its economic fate to the Brussels!

"The question is how long it will take to solve these acute problems." .... well Clausen .... here's the thing. In the immediate future, the Eurozone will fracture into a two-speed zone. We will have Germany powering away prompting the need for higher interest rates as inflation brought on by a growth spurt, rises. In stark contrast we have Spain, Greece and Ireland with massive debt, unemployment , and a deflating economy prompting the need for lower interest rates to stimulate growth.

So unless the Germans feel all charitable and gives money away to Ireland, Greece and Spain, or unless the Germans start buying actual chunks of Irish and Spanish territory ... there is no long term solution. Note that the former seem more likely as the bailouts given to Ireland, Greece and Spain being written off is Germany being charitable. The assumption ofcourse is that Ireland, Greece and Spain use the money wisely .... which does NOT seem likely and hence why the ECB attaches conditions on the bailouts they have given to Ireland and Greece so far.

That's the long-term outlook for the Eurozone.

So yeah, Annika ... Christian ... don't bother to come to work anymore.
09:12 December 28, 2010 by Kevin Harris
"there is no doubt that the euro will survive." Nordea CEO Christian Clausen

There is considerable doubt wheteher the Euro will survive; even amongst its most ardent supporters. If Cristian Clausen has bet the Nordea farm on the Euro being around in the next ten years, Nordea shareholders may be in for a difficult time.
11:19 December 28, 2010 by zircon
The more interesting days of Swedish ambitions to join the Euro or not are over. Over the last decade we have seen no particular new thing coming from the Swedes in power on the subject. Since Anna Lindh has died nothing else happened on this front. She was as great as McNamara.
16:46 December 28, 2010 by Syftfel
Treschow is right! If joining the Euro means that we have to bail out third world sink holes in southern Europe, please save us. These lazy southern rim cesspools need to be taught a lesson and live within their means, and not expect us to bail them out. Don't join the Euro! And while we're at it, take a look at the Schengen Agreement too. This appears to have a destructive impact on Nordic cohesion and uniformity.
01:13 January 3, 2011 by mkvgtired
"It is maybe more important for large countries like England to take a position and join so that it becomes a more stable area. It is not good with an unstable currency area,"

And I'm sure the UK is very happy at the moment it did not join the Euro, despite the fact it has given considerable funds to bail out the troubling nations. The German Mark was by far the most held reserve currency behind the USD before the Euro was introduced. By joining (or one could say forming) the Euro Germany succeeded in diluting its own currency's strength by spreading it to the entire Eurozone. Considering the very favorable position of the German Mark I am very surprised Germany pushed so hard for the creation of the Euro.
17:19 January 4, 2011 by landofthesheeple
How can Sweden be part of the EU, but not have the Euro as currancy?

It would be like getting partial circumcision : ) lol

As to no surprise however, it's just like the typical Swedish relationship. The couple live together and have kids, but never get married (save that one for another topic).

BTW- Wasn't Sweden already bailing out third world countries by relocating their inhabitants here?

No wonder this country is going down the chocolate river with out toilet paper. No one has here has the courage to make rational decisions one way or the other.

Sheesh !
Today's headlines
Video: How to be Joel Kinnaman for a day
Kinnaman with one of the camera rigs that will allow people inside his head. Photo: Tele2

The Swedish Hollywood actor will strap a camera to his head, stream it live and allow viewers to interact with him this weekend.

Presented by Invest Stockholm
How Stockholm's cold climate boosts creativity
Photo: Ola Ericson/imagebank.sweden.se

Do long, dark winters actually make Swedes more creative and more productive? We spoke to Stockholm startups to find out.

Meet Sweden's lonely Donald Trump voter
A Donald Trump campaign button. Photo: Rogelio V Solis/AP

The Local talks to an American Donald Trump supporter on what it is like living in progressive stronghold Sweden.

Sweden to keep record-low interest rate in 2017
Sweden's landmark negative interest rate will continue towards 2018. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

The Swedish central bank said that it will take longer than expected to reach its inflation target.

Presented by Stockholm University
9 unexpected programmes at Stockholm University
Photo: Niklas Björling

Did you know Stockholm University offers 75 master's programmes taught in English? And some of them are programmes you won't find anywhere else...

Creepy clown messes with the wrong dog walker in Sweden
Not the clown in the story. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

A dog helped its owner fight off a creepy clown chasing the pair in southern Sweden.

A million Swedes are digitally excluded: report
How should Sweden bridge the digital divide? Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Tech-savvy Swedes? Perhaps not. A new study suggests that at least a million of its residents feel the pain of the digital divide.

Malmö's 19th Swedish title sets Champions hopes alight
Malmö fans celebrating after the match. Photo: Björn Lindgren/TT

Malmö FF have their eyes set on the Champions League after winning the Swedish league for the 19th time.

What's on in Sweden
Five great autumn events in Sweden this week
Jazz in northern Sweden. Photo: Umeå Jazz Festival

Food, music, movies and more food. What better way of helping yourself forget that the days are getting shorter and colder?

Here's how slow Sweden's high-speed trains are getting
A Swedish SJX2000 high speed train. Photo: Tomas Oneborg/SvD/TT

The high-speed rail journey between the three biggest Swedish cities is about to get longer.

Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
People-watching: October 26th
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast
Is Game of Thrones coming to Sweden?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available