SHARE
COPY LINK

TRADE

Sweden’s 2013 exports figures take a dip

Swedish exports decreased seven percent in the past year, yet trade was comparatively buoyant in the last quarter of 2013 compared to the months prior.

Sweden's 2013 exports figures take a dip
Cranes in Gothenburg harbour. File photo: Adam Ihse/TT

The value of Swedish exports amounted to 1.09 billion kronor ($167 million) in 2013, new trade figures published by Statistics Sweden (Statistiska centralbyrån – SCB) showed on Thursday. 

"During the fourth quarter, Swedish exports of goods decreased by three percent compared to the same period of the previous year," the state agency said in a statement. "Both exports and imports developed stronger during the fourth quarter compared to the earlier quarters of 2013."

Swedish trade with other EU member states fell by six percent, while exports to euro zone countries fell by four percent. Exports to the UK fell by 21 percent, while exports to Germany and Denmark decreased by five and two percent respectively.

Trade with China, however, saw an export increase of five percent, while imports from China fell by two percent.

In 2013, the agency summarized, there was a "net trade surplus of 51 billion kronor ($7.8 billion). The net trade surplus in 2012 was 59 billion."

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

TRADE

Sweden warns of sharper than expected economic slowdown

Sweden's government has worsened its economic outlook, bracing the country for slowing growth and rising unemployment.

Sweden warns of sharper than expected economic slowdown
Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson said trade tensions were slowing growth. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT
In its latest prognosis, the country's finance ministry expects the country's economy to grow by 1.1 percent in 2020, down from the 1.4 percent it predicted in last September's budget. 
 
“We expect growth in Sweden to start slowing,” Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson said as she released the new figures. 
 
“There is a fairly broad consensus on the reason: This is due to trade wars and growing barriers for business, which has generated uncertainty over trade in the future, leading to reduced investment.” 
 
She said that the lacklustre economic growth in Germany had been a particular problem for Swedish exporters. 
 
According to the new prognosis, unemployment will hit 7 percent this year and next year, compared to the 6.4 percent predicted in September. 
 
But Andersson said that Sweden's healthy government finance, the result of years of budget surpluses, put it in a strong position to weather the downturn. 
 
“We can meet this slowdown without any significant cuts,” she said. “We have the lowest government debt since 1977 and compared to other EU countries were are extremely low.” 
 
She described the country's finances as a 'welfare reserve' which would allow the government to keep services running and provide fiscal economic stimulus in bad times.
 
She also said that the government planned this year to channel more money to Sweden's cash-strapped municipalities in through a special spring budget, recognising that growing unemployment is likely to drag on local budgets. 
 
The government could release emergency financing to the municipalities even earlier, she said. 
 
“It's obvious that requirements are greater now and will be greater in future.” 
SHOW COMMENTS