Tuesday, September 20, 2016
"The Swedish Economy Is Very Strong"
Via Business Insider: This morning, Sweden's center-left government presented its proposed budget for 2017, and Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson was painting a bright future for Sweden. ”The Swedish economy is very strong", Andersson said and continued: "We have the highest growth in our region, unemployment is falling and the large deficit we inherited when we took power has been basically wiped out". Andersson predicts that finances will return to balance in 2018, and stuck to a growth forecast of 3.5 percent for this year. The Government now wants to increase spending by around 0.6 percent of GDP in 2017, with 23.6 billion kronor ($2.68 billion) in budgeted reforms in 2017. This number will then increase to 28.1 billion ($3.28 billion) in 2018, 33.4 billion ($3.9 billion) in 2019, and 36 billion ($4.2 billion) in 2020. The Government also presented a number of tax proposals to increase tax revenues by about 7 billion kronor. The proposals include: * prohibiting deductions for interest expenditure on certain subordinated liabilities * abolishing the right to income tax deductions for official meals * limiting upward adjustment of the threshold for state income tax * introducing tax on chemicals in certain electronic products * increasing the tax on alcohol Spendning will focus on increasing welfare, with ”major investments” in health, education and social services, according to Andersson. ”Sweden's growing population makes strengthening welfare particularly important. The Government continues to prioritise welfare services and in this bill proposes that an additional SEK 10 billion a year be made available to municipalities and county councils in general government grants. This will enable them to take a long-term approach to developing their welfare services taking local conditions into account. Together with the Government's previous welfare investments, these resources correspond to the cost of roughly 30.000 employees in welfare services", Andersson writes in a statement.