The budget passed by 174 to 173 votes.
As a result, guaranteed pensions for pensioners on low or no incomes will increase by up to 800 kronor a month after tax from August.
Formally, a majority of MP’s voted no to the right-wing opposition’s budget, proposed by the Moderates, the Christian Democrats, the Liberals and the Sweden Democrats, meaning that the budget proposed by the government with the support of the Green Party, the Left Party and the Centre Party was approved.
If the vote had been even on both sides, it could have been decided by drawing lots, giving each budget a 50 percent chance of being passed.
Finance Minister Mikael Damberg thanked the parties supporting the government’s budget in a press conference following the vote.
“I want to thank the parties who contributed to this: the Centre Party, the Left Party and the Green Party,” he said. “In total, a million pensioners will be affected by this proposal as soon as this autumn.”
“It’s a necessary reform which is about equality. After a life spent working in Sweden, everyone has the right to economic security in their old age.”
In an interview with public service broadcaster SVT Nyheter after the vote, leader of the conservative Moderate party, Ulf Kristersson criticised the new budget, stating that pensioners would have been better off under the opposition’s proposal.
“It harms confidence in Swedish economic policy and it’s bad for the pensioners who would have had a better pension under our proposal,” he told SVT.
“It shouldn’t ever go to drawing lots,” he told SVT, “this has been a rather telling end to a term of office which has been completely unsustainable.”
“We need governments who can govern, with a governing foundation and well-thought-out economic policy.”
On the other side of the political divide, Left Party leader Nooshi Dadgostar was happy to see the government’s budget passed, despite the fact that the so-called Nooshi-supplement to pensions which she had lobbied for was not included in the final pension proposal.
“It’s a long time since I was this happy,” she told SVT. “We wanted a raise in the guarantee pension from the beginning – we haven’t raised the guarantee pension by this much in over 25 years.”