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Lööf sacks agency head after lavish spending

6 Aug 2012, 16:01

Published: 06 Aug 2012 16:01 GMT+02:00

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“The activities that the Agency for Economic and Regional Growth are responsible for are immensely important and for the agency to continue to develop and do a good job it needs a director general who holds the full confidence of Swedish trade and industry, of Sweden's citizens as well as the government,” said minister for enterprise, Annie Lööf, in a statement on Monday.

The announcement follows daily Dagens Nyheter’s revelations from the end of July that the agency had spent some 25,000 kronor ($3,680) per employee since January 2010 on luxury dinners, ski trips and spa visits.

On Wednesday last week Swedish enterprise minister Annie Lööf called in the heads of all the state agencies under her control for talks.

"We need to have a discussion. The agencies set their own limits for internal entertainment. It is thus reasonable to have a collective discussion... on what is reasonable, common sense and exemplary," said Marita Ljung of the ministry for enterprise to news agency TT at the time.

Lugnet will leave her duties at the agency on Thursday.

According to the ministry, Lugnet will now be given different responsibilities within the government offices as she has three years left of her appointment.

TT/The Local/rm

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Your comments about this article

16:41 August 6, 2012 by RobinHood
It's great to see the government finally getting to grips with the numerous state institutions that have squandered tax payers' money for decades. Sadly, Mrs Lugnet has awarded herself an employment contract that guarantees her personal gravy train for three more years (nice one Christina). I expect she's going to get a huge pension to soften her angst, when she finally goes.

It's time for a complete review of all state institutions (not only those under the dynamic Annie Lööf), and for the guilty to be named, shamed and got rid of as soon as possible: expenses, salaries, pensions, terms of contract, the whole shebang!

This sort of institutionalised corruption was well established when the Moderates took over. Why has it taken them so long for them to begin to put a stop to it? Better late than never I suppose.
18:29 August 6, 2012 by Svensksmith
Why do these so called "public servants" so often get it backward.
20:52 August 6, 2012 by johan rebel
She will still get paid for doing nothing for three years, and they call that getting sacked?
21:31 August 6, 2012 by Reason abd Realism
Would be good to promote grass-roots identification of obscene or pointless spending within all tax-funded government agencies, by in some way recognizing/commending/rewarding the internal whistle blower, or journalist, who first brought the financial abuse to national attention.
22:32 August 6, 2012 by SOIS.COM
@reason. Exactly, all governments if they were truly interested in democracy and transparency would hire independent citizens groups to monitor government and industry activity. Society can't be expected to be the watchdog of everything that goes on only being volunteers. I think a decently compensated cadre of frustrated citizens would do more good than all the inspectorates and ombudsman would,
08:40 August 7, 2012 by nolikegohome
thank you Lööf you rock. We need more ppl like you in the govt. I hope these lavish greedy idiots will pay back the money they stole unjustly from the public somehow. Cut their salaries so we get back our hard earned tax money.
10:05 August 7, 2012 by Borilla
When professional politicians circulate from post to post without any oversight, what do you expect? Sweden has a political class that exists above and away from its citizens. This lady will be put on the shelf for three years and then quietly allowed to take a place where she can do more damage.If the government watched its own fiscal house in the same way it watches the citizens, things like this wouldn't happen.
11:13 August 7, 2012 by robban70226
ood moral to try to put the fire out but, not enough. She should be charged with misuse of public funds in court and give others the note that it is a crime and not acceptable, sweeping it under the carpet will not recover confidence of taxpayers of public officials capacity and integrity, transparency please.. Start looking into the skeletons in the other agencies closets, there is plenty corruption and misuse of taxpayer money going on ..

Some respect for the hard working people paying plenty of tax for??
15:36 August 7, 2012 by cogito
Annie Lööf called in the heads of all the state agencies for talks.

"We need to have a discussion....to have a collective discussion... on what is reasonable, common sense and exemplary...."

Yep. A collective discussion is certain to end the institutionalized corruption that is rampant in Sweden's "public service."
13:29 August 9, 2012 by Just_Kidding
It is sad to have people who do days of research and haggle for hours for a discount on a 20000 SEK second hand car, but when it comes to spending public money, they are very generous and don't mind the bills as long as the taxpayer pays them, integrity = 0.
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