With just under two weeks to go until Sweden's general election, the four leaders of the country's governing Alliance took a boat trip to the Finnboda Shipyard in Nacka just outside Stockholm on Monday morning, where they explained how they planned to rule Sweden if they're voted in for a third term.
Education reforms including smaller class sizes were top of the agenda alongside plans to create 50, 000 jobs and build new homes in Sweden's cities.
- Compulsory schooling for ten years (currently pupils must attend lessons for nine years)
- Smaller class sizes and more teachers
- Get Sweden into the top 10 in the international PISA rankings within a decade
- Ensure more councils share responsibility for taking in refugees
- Enable the Migration Board to run its own accommodation centres
- Speed up process of getting immigrants established on labour market
- Make it easier and quicker for employers to recruit foreign workers
- Speed up and improve language-learning services
- Create 50,000 new jobs including 20,000 in the construction sector
- Further cuts to social fees for companies who employ staff aged under 23
- Expand apprenticeship schemes and increase benefits for new apprentices
- Subsidies for companies that employ staff who have previously been unemployed long-term
- Cut sick pay costs for employers
- Increase probationary period in jobs from 6 to 12 months
- Allow people to go on courses while still claiming unemployment benefits.
- Raise taxes on alcohol and cigarettes
- Invest in tackling mental health problems among young people
- Cut waiting times for cancer care
- Improve overall quality of service in hospitals
- New high-speed rail lines from Stockholm to Gothenburg and Malmö
- Improve links between Sweden and Denmark
- No introduction of a per-kilometre road tax for trucks (a policy supported by the Greens and the Left Party)
- Keep Bromma Airport open
- Reduce bureaucracy for builders to cut the time between making planning applications and building work getting underway
- Relax planning rules for student housing and force state-owned company Akademiska Hus to build more student homes
- Halve the amount of time it takes to start a company in Sweden with incentives including by reducing the amount of capital needed to start a business
- Introduce a limit on companies' sick-pay liabilities.
- Tougher sentencing for offences including murder, violent crimes, drug offences, robbery, human trafficking and paying for sex acts involving children
- New criminal categories for rape of a particularly violent nature, and for criminal negligence in rape cases
- Re-examine definition of rape and consider the issue of consent
- Make it easier to confiscate criminals’ assets.
- Crack down on the illegal passport trade by making it more difficult and expensive to issue multiple passports