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Today in Sweden: a roundup of the latest news on Friday

Find out what's going on in Sweden today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Sweden: a roundup of the latest news on Friday
Third vaccine doses are delayed in many regions due to lack of resources. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Speaker nominates Magdalena Andersson to prime minister post – again

Social Democrat leader Magdalena Andersson will get another chance to become Sweden’s first female prime minister, after the speaker of parliament Andreas Norlén said he would nominate her for the office a second time. Andersson resigned on Wednesday just hours after having been confirmed by parliament as the country’s next prime minister.

The Swedish parliament is now set to again vote on Andersson as prime minister on Monday.

Speaker Andreas Norlén made the announcement on Thursday afternoon after having met with the leaders of Sweden’s eight parties.

Here’s our guide for what could happen next.

Swedish vocabulary: igen – again

Vaccination rate in many regions delayed by lack of resources

According to a survey carried out by public broadcaster SVT, 17 of 21 Swedish regions lack the resources to administer booster vaccines at the required rate. This refers not only to a lack of personnel, but also a lack of venues large enough to administer vaccines on a larger scale.

Vaccinating the most elderly and frail with a third dose has been emphasised as one of the most important ways of protecting this group’s immunity, as protection from vaccines decreases at a faster rate in the elderly. At the same time, children, unvaccinated adults and healthcare personnel must also be vaccinated, straining resources.

State epidemiologist Anders Tegnell described the situation to SVT as “extremely unfortunate, given that we need to protect these groups quickly”.

The Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SKR), blames the delay on last-minute announcements from the Public Health Agency, making it difficult to prepare for scaling up the rate of vaccination.

The Public Health Agency argues that SKR should have been more prepared, as the agency had previously stated that third doses would be offered.

Swedish vocabulary: skydda – protect

Speaker criticism of Green Party “historic”

Speaker Andreas Norlén has criticised the Green Party for not informing him in advance that they were planning to quit the government if the left-wing coalition’s budget failed, before he nominated Magdalena Andersson as prime minister the first time around. Their decision led to Andersson resigning from the post, just hours after she was elected.

“In that case I obviously would not have nominated Magdalena Andersson on Monday. I would have waited until after the budget vote,” Norlén told a press conference on Thursday.

He said that the fact that a government had to resign hours after being elected “risked damaging trust” in Sweden’s political system, but stopped short of criticising Andersson, saying that the Green Party’s decision had seemed to come as a surprise to her, too.

Now, political experts are saying the criticism is historic.

“It’s unique – no former speaker has ever criticised an individual party,” said Tommy Möller, professor of political science to newswire TT.

Swedish vocabulary: historisk – historic

Member comments

  1. The greens have withdrawn their support for a reason. That reason was in existance before a new prime minister was elected. Ergo both sides were playing their game. Andersson and co have clearly expected the greens to stand with them. The only thing surprising here is that the greens pulled through with it. That was unexpected. Fine difference, but obvious move. Stop exaggerating the situation.

    1. I understand your point, Niklas, but this is uncharted waters in Sweden’s political history, regardless of whether it was expected or not, so it’s not about exaggeration but about a very notable occurrence that’s left a lot of us wondering hat’s going to happen next. It’s also worth adding that it signifies a new trend within this relatively recent era of colaition politics – the minor parties such as the MP, Vänsterpartiet and, sadly, the SD, are finding their voices and playing the their game, as you so nicely put it. That again is new for us, and worthy of big headlines.

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Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Monday

Training Ukrainian troops, pilots sign SAS deal, house prices, and election pledges: find out what's going on in Sweden with The Local's roundup

Today in Sweden: A roundup of the latest news on Monday

SAS pilots approve new collective agreement

As many as 93 percent of the Danish SAS pilots have voted yes to the agreement which ended strike action but also means, among other things, redeployments, longer working weeks, and lower wages.

The union Dansk Metal announced the level of acceptance on Saturday morning. The pilots could have voted yes or no on the new collective agreement until midnight on Friday evening.

Pilots in Sweden and Norway have also approved the agreement.

Keld Bækkelund Hansen, head of negotiations at Dansk Metal, said “I am incredibly happy. It is a bit atypical to see that a collective agreement negotiation ends in agreements being made that reduce wages and conditions.”

“So, of course, it was exciting how our members viewed the new collective agreement. But they could also see that it was a necessity in relation to SAS’s situation,” he added.

Swedish vocab: att godkänna – to approve 

Majority of households believe house prices will fall 

A clear majority of 57 percent of house households in Sweden now believe house prices will fall, a six percentage points rise on the last month, according to the latest edition of the monthly house price indicator from the country’s SEB bank.  

“It’s clear that an increasingly harsh climate for private finances is affecting house price indications, which lie at the lowest level since the 2008 finance crisis,” said the bank’s private economist Américo Fernández in a press message.

Swedish vocab: kärva – harsh 

Christian Democrats call for national plan for maternity care 

The Christian Democrats have called for a national plan for maternity care, in an election pledge that it the party sees as the first stage in its plan to replace Sweden’s regional health authorities with a national health service. 

“Swedish healthcare is suffering from a system failure, which is spelled ‘regions'”, the party’s leader Ebba Busch, said in her summer speech ahead of September’s election. 

The plan would see the reopening of closed maternity clinics and wards, and a guarantee that threatened clinics and wards be kept open. 

Swedish vocab: att avskaffa – to abolish 

Liberals propose campaign to bring order to Swedish schools 

The Liberal Party has proposed a national campaign to bring order to Swedish schools, which the party is calling an ordningslyft, literally “order lift”. 

The campaign will include an “order contract”, signed by all pupils and parents, and five other proposals, of which two are new. 

The two new proposals are that the Swedish National Agency for Education (Skolverket) state clearly that pupils have a responsibility for order in schools, and must come in time for lessons, look after their school books, use decent language, and arrive rested for lessons. Parents also share responsibility, and must, for instance, come to parent-teacher meetings. 

Swedish vocab: förväntningar – expectations

Swedish Armed Forces to give 10,000 Ukrainian soldiers basic training 

Sweden has agreed to send 120 military officers to the UK, where they are expected to help train up to 10,000 Ukrainian citizens basic military training, under a scheme run by the UK. 

“This is important if Ukraine is going to be able to maintain and strengthen its ability to defend itself,” Sweden’s prime minister, Magdalena Andersson, said at a joint press conference with the country’s defence minister, Peter Hultqvist, on Sunday. 

The two made the announcement on a visit to the Armed Forces military base in Boden, northern Sweden. 

Sweden will never have more than 60 military instructors in the UK at any one time, and the scheme is expected to run from August 12th to December 31st. 

Swedish vocab: att upprätthålla – to maintain