Stockholm suburb claims top spot in business-friendliness ranking

The north Stockholm suburb of Solna has been named the most business-friendly municipality in Sweden according to a new ranking.

Solna, located just north of the Swedish capital city, topped a new ranking published on Tuesday by the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise (Svenskt Näringsliv).

“Solna continues to impress with high marks from both its own businesses and for the high values of the statistical factors which compliment the answers to the survey,” Carolina Brånby, a specialist on local business climate with the business group, said in a statement.

Coming in second in the ranking is the municipality of Vellinge in southern Sweden, followed by Trosa, in eastern Sweden, and Sollentuna, another suburb on the north side of Stockholm.

Other Stockholm suburbs in the top ten include Sollentuna, Nacka, Danderyd, and Upplands Väsby, all of which are situated north of the capital.

In general, many of the municipalities considered to be conducive to business can be found in and around Sweden’s large metropolitan areas, while sparsely populated regions in the north of the country are home to only six out of the top 100 ranked municipalities.

The municipality of Hörby in southern Sweden recorded the biggest jump in the Confederation’s rankings this year, moving up 87 spots to 58th place out of Sweden’s 290 municipalities.

Hagfors, located in Värmland County in central Sweden, also jumped 87 spots from last year, when it came in 189th place.

The least business-friendly climate in Sweden can be found in Färgelanda in western Sweden, a municipality which has slid steadily down in the Confederation’s rankings for the past several years.

The ranking is based largely on responses to surveys sent to 33,000 business owners around the country which asks them to rank their home municipality’s business climate.

In addition, figures from Statistics Sweden (SCB) and the UC credit information agency also affect the rankings.

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Sweden and UK strike deal to get more artillery to Ukraine

Sweden on Thursday announced a deal to sell its Archer mobile cannon system to the United Kingdom, allowing London to donate its older AS90 artillery system to Ukraine.

Sweden and UK strike deal to get more artillery to Ukraine

The Swedish government said in a statement that the UK would purchase 14 Archer units.

Stockholm announced in January it would also be sending the Archer system directly to Ukraine without specifying an amount, and on Thursday it said it would send eight pieces.

The Swedish-developed Archer system is a fully-automated howitzer mounted on an all-terrain vehicle, which allows the gun to be remotely operated by the crew sitting in the armoured cab.

“Artillery such as the Archer, together with armoured vehicles and tanks, increases Ukraine’s defence capability and enables them to retake territory,” Swedish Defence Minister Pal Jonson said.

Britain said the 14 Archer systems would serve as “an interim replacement for the 32 AS90 artillery systems the UK gifted to the Armed Forces of Ukraine”.

London announced it was sending the AS90 to Ukraine in January. Sweden’s government said it had so far pledged 16.9 billion kronor ($1.6 billion) worth of military support for Ukraine.

In February, Sweden joined a slew of Western nations pledging heavier weapons for Ukraine, by promising “around 10” of its Leopard 2 A5 tanks, as well as the IRIS-T and HAWK anti-air missile systems.