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TODAY IN SWEDEN

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
Sweden's state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

New battery factory set to create 3,000 jobs in western Sweden

Northvolt and Volvo Cars will build their joint battery factory at Torslanda in Gothenburg, which is expected to create at least 3,000 new jobs in the city.

Construction is set to begin next year, according to a press release, and the factory will produce battery cells to be used in Volvo’s and Polestar’s next-generation electric cars. The 30-billion-kronor hub is expected to be ready to start production in 2025.

Swedish vocabulary: Gothenburg – Göteborg

Medieval ship found off the west coast of Sweden

A previously unknown shipwreck has been found at Dyngö near Fjällbacka in western Sweden. It it the oldest shipwreck ever found in the Bohuslän region – and one of the oldest cogs that has been found in Europe, according to Gothenburg University.

“The wreck is made from oaks cut between 1233 and 1240, so nearly 800 years ago,” Staffan von Arbin, a maritime archaeologist at the university, said in a statement.

Swedish vocabulary: a shipwreck – ett skeppsvrak

More Covid patients in Swedish hospitals

The number of Covid-19 inpatients is on the increase in almost all regions in Sweden, writes the TT news agency – a total of 2,000 with confirmed Covid as of February 2nd.

But thanks to the high vaccination rate among older age groups, they are not as seriously ill as during previous waves of the pandemic. In for example the Skåne region, they now spend on average 5.7 days in hospital, down from 10.1 days a year ago.

It is not entirely clear how many of the patients are in hospital because they have Covid-19, or are in hospital due to other reasons. The data are treated differently in different regions, writes TT. But on January 22nd, 46 percent of patients with confirmed Covid-19 had it as their primary diagnosis, according to the Public Health Agency.

Swedish vocabulary: a hospital – ett sjukhus

Sweden to lift nearly all Covid-19 restrictions next week

Swedish authorities announced yesterday that all restrictions will be removed on February 9th, and that those working from home should prepare to return to work.

“The pandemic is not over, but is entering a completely new phase,” said Andersson. “We are nearing the point for Sweden to open up again.”

The government said that the decision was based on a number of factors, partly that Omicron appears to be a milder variant, and partly that the percentage of the population who are fully vaccinated or have taken a booster dose continues to increase.

You can read more HERE about which measures will be removed next week, and we also asked the government in THIS article what will happen to the border restrictions.

Swedish vocabulary: a decision – ett beslut

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TODAY IN SWEDEN

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

Magdalena Andersson in the US, property prices drop and Turkey's Nato objections. Here's Sweden's news on Thursday.

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

Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson to visit US President Biden

Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson is in Washington today alongside Finland’s president Sauli Niinistö. The two will visit US President Joe Biden to discuss the war in Ukraine and Turkey’s opposition to their Nato applications, which were handed in yesterday.

“The meeting is an important security policy signal,” Andersson wrote on her Instagram account from Washington DC.

The two Nordic leaders boarded the flight to Washington DC shortly after their Nato ambassadors applied to join the alliance.

At the meeting in the White House today, the delicate security situation in both Finland and Sweden will be discussed. A number of countries, including the USA, have stated that they will support Sweden and Finland in the period before their Nato applications are approved by all member states in the alliance.

A final approval could take up to a year, and Russia is expected to react to the two countries joining Nato in some way.

Sweden and Finland’s decision to join the Nato alliance was applauded by Ukrainians taking part in a demonstration outside the White House.

Swedish vocabulary: stöd – support

Property prices plummet after central bank increases inflation rate

Property prices have dropped after the Swedish central bank increased inflation rates.

At the same time, the amount of apartments on property website Hemnet has increased to a record level, as sellers seek to get their property on the market quickly.

Valueguard’s price index, which measures changes in prices, sank by 1.7 percent in the two first weeks of May in the Stockholm region. In Gothenburg, prices decreased by 1.3 when compared with April.

This is the first property price measurement in May since the central bank decided to increase key index rates by 0.25 percent while also sharply raising their interest rate forecast.

Having said that, there was also a decrease in property prices in April – 0.3 percent for apartments and 0.5 percent for houses.

Swedish vocabulary: en nedgång – a decrease

Turkish president Erdogan urges Nato to ‘respect’ concerns over Sweden joining

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has threatened to block Finland and Sweden from joining Nato, urged the alliance’s members on Wednesday to “respect” Ankara’s concerns about the two countries, which Turkey accuses of harbouring terrorists.

“Our only expectation from Nato allies is… to first understand our sensitivity, respect and finally support it,” Erdogan told his party’s legislators in parliament.

Finland and Sweden submitted a joint application to join Nato on Wednesday May 18th as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine forces a dramatic reappraisal of security in Europe.

Erdogan accused Stockholm of providing safe haven to members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) designated as a terror group by Ankara and its Western allies.

“We asked them to extradite 30 terrorists but they refused to do so,” he said.

“You will not send back the terrorists to us and then ask our support for your Nato membership … We cannot say ‘yes’ to make this security organisation being lacking in security,” he added.

Swedish vocab: terrorister – terrorists

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