Facts about Sweden

Source: CIA World Fact Book

Location: 62 00 N, 15 00 E -- Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Skagerrak, between Finland and Norway


Description: blue with a yellow cross that extends to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag)


Location:Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, and Skagerrak, between Finland and Norway
Geographic coordinates:62 00 N, 15 00 E
Map references:Europe
total area:449,964 sq km
land area:410,928 sq km
comparative area:slightly smaller than California
Land boundaries:
total:2,205 km
border countries:Finland 586 km, Norway 1,619 km
Coastline:3,218 km
Maritime claims:
continental shelf:200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
exclusive economic zone:agreed boundaries or midlines
territorial sea:12 nm
International disputes:none
Climate:temperate in south with cold, cloudy winters and cool, partly cloudy summers; subarctic in north
Terrain:mostly flat or gently rolling lowlands; mountains in west
lowest point:Baltic Sea 0 m
highest point:Kebnekaise 2,111 m
Natural resources:zinc, iron ore, lead, copper, silver, timber, uranium, hydropower potential
Land use:
arable land:7%
permanent crops:0%
meadows and pastures:2%
forest and woodland:64%
Irrigated land:1,120 sq km (1989 est.)
current issues:acid rain damaging soils and lakes; pollution of the North Sea and the Baltic Sea
natural hazards:ice floes in the surrounding waters, especially in the Gulf of Bothnia, can interfere with maritime traffic
international agreements:party to - Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Wetlands; signed, but not ratified - Law of the Sea
Geographic note:strategic location along Danish Straits linking Baltic and North Seas


Population:8,900,954 (July 1996 est.)
Age structure:
0-14 years:19% (male 860,940; female 815,967)
15-64 years:64% (male 2,884,687; female 2,794,593)
65 years and over:17% (male 654,439; female 890,328) (July 1996 est.)
Population growth rate:0.56% (1996 est.)
Birth rate:11.55 births/1,000 population (1996 est.)
Death rate:11.43 deaths/1,000 population (1996 est.)
Net migration rate:5.48 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1996 est.)
Sex ratio:
at birth:1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years:1.06 male(s)/female
15-64 years:1.03 male(s)/female
65 years and over:0.74 male(s)/female
all ages:0.98 male(s)/female (1996 est.)
Infant mortality rate:4.5 deaths/1,000 live births (1996 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
total population:78.06 years
male:75.62 years
female:80.63 years (1996 est.)
Total fertility rate:1.72 children born/woman (1996 est.)
Ethnic divisions:white, Lapp (Sami), foreign-born or first-generation immigrants 12% (Finns, Yugoslavs, Danes, Norwegians, Greeks, Turks)
Religions:Evangelical Lutheran 94%, Roman Catholic 1.5%, Pentecostal 1%, other 3.5% (1987)
note:small Lapp- and Finnish-speaking minorities
Literacy:age 15 and over can read and write (1979 est.)
total population:99%


Name of country:
conventional long form:Kingdom of Sweden
conventional short form:Sweden
local long form:Konungariket Sverige
local short form:Sverige
Data code:SW
Type of government:constitutional monarchy
Administrative divisions:24 provinces (lan, singular and plural); Alvsborgs Lan, Blekinge Lan, Gavleborgs Lan, Goteborgs och Bohus Lan, Gotlands Lan, Hallands Lan, Jamtlands Lan, Jonkopings Lan, Kalmar Lan, Kopparbergs Lan, Kristianstads Lan, Kronobergs Lan, Malmohus Lan, Norrbottens Lan, Orebro Lan, Ostergotlands Lan, Skaraborgs Lan, Sodermanlands Lan, Stockholms Lan, Uppsala Lan, Varmlands Lan, Vasterbottens Lan, Vasternorrlands Lan, Vastmanlands Lan
Independence:6 June 1523, Gustav VASA was elected king; 6 June 1809, a constitutional monarchy was established
National holiday:Day of the Swedish Flag, 6 June
Constitution:1 January 1975
Legal system:civil law system influenced by customary law; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Suffrage:18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state:King CARL XVI GUSTAF (since 19 September 1973) is a constitutional monarch; Heir Apparent Princess VICTORIA Ingrid Alice Desiree, daughter of the King (born 14 July 1977)
head of government:Prime Minister Goran PERSSON (since 21 March 1996) was elected by the Riksdag
cabinet:Cabinet was appointed by the prime minister
Legislative branch:unicameral
Parliament (Riksdag):elections last held 18 September 1994 (next to be held NA September 1998); results - Social Democrats 45.4%, Moderate Party (Conservatives) 22.3%, Center Party 7.7%, Liberals 7.2%, Left Party 6.2%, Greens 5.8%, Christian Democrats 4.1%, New Democracy Party 1.2%; seats - (349 total) Social Democrats 162, Moderate Party (Conservatives) 80, Center Party 27, Liberals 26, Left Party 22, Greens 18, Christian Democrats 14; note - the New Democracy Party did not receive a seat because parties require a minimum of 4.0% of votes for a seat in parliament
Judicial branch:Supreme Court (Hogsta Domstolen), judges are appointed by the government (prime minister and cabinet)
Political parties and leaders:Social Democratic Party, Goran PERSSON; Moderate Party (conservative), Carl BILDT; Liberal People's Party, Maria LEISSNER; Center Party, Olof JOHANSSON; Christian Democratic Party, Alf SVENSSON; New Democracy Party, Vivianne FRANZEN; Left Party (VP; Communist), Gudrun SCHYMAN; Communist Workers' Party, Rolf HAGEL; Green Party, no formal leader but party spokesperson is Briger SCHLAUG
International organization participation:AfDB, AG (observer), AsDB, Australia Group, BIS, CBSS, CCC, CE, CERN, EBRD, ECE, EIB, ESA, EU, FAO, G- 6, G- 8, G- 9, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, MTCR, NACC, NAM (guest), NC, NEA, NIB, NSG, OECD, OSCE, PCA, PFP, UN, UNAVEM III, UNCRO, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIKOM, UNITAR, UNMOGIP, UNOMIG, UNPREDEP, UNPROFOR, UNTSO, UPU, WEU (observer), WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in US:
chief of mission:Ambassador Carl Henrik Sihver LILJEGREN
chancery:1501 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20005
telephone:[1] (202) 467-2600
FAX:[1] (202) 467-2699
consulate(s) general:Los Angeles and New York
US diplomatic representation:
chief of mission:Ambassador Thomas L. SIEBERT
embassy:Strandvagen 101, S-115 89 Stockholm
mailing address:use embassy street address
telephone:[46] (8) 783 53 00
FAX:[46] (8) 661 19 64
Flag:blue with a yellow cross that extends to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag)


Economic overview:Aided by peace and neutrality during World War I through World War II, Sweden has achieved an enviable standard of living under a mixed system of high-tech capitalism and extensive welfare benefits. It has a modern distribution system, excellent internal and external communications, and a skilled labor force. Timber, hydropower, and iron ore constitute the resource base of an economy heavily oriented toward foreign trade. Privately-owned firms account for about 90% of industrial output, of which the engineering sector accounts for 50% of output and exports. In 1993, agriculture accounted for only 2% of GDP and 2% of the jobs. In recent years, however, this extraordinarily favorable picture has been clouded by budgetary difficulties, inflation, growing unemployment, and a gradual loss of competitiveness in international markets. In November 1992, Sweden broke its tie to the EC's ECU (European Currency Unit), and depreciation of the krona has boosted export competitiveness and helped lift Sweden out of its 1991-93 recession. To curb the budget deficit and bolster confidence in the economy, the government adopted an adjustment program in November 1994 that aims to eliminate the government budget deficit and to stabilize the debt to GDP ratio. Sweden has harmonized its economic policies with those of the EU, which it joined at the start of 1995.
GDP:purchasing power parity - $177.3 billion (1995 est.)
GDP real growth rate:3.5% (1995 est.)
GDP per capita:$20,100 (1995 est.)
GDP composition by sector:
services:71% (1993)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):2.6% (1995)
Labor force:4.552 million (84% unionized, 1992)
by occupation:community, social and personal services 38.3%, mining and manufacturing 21.2%, commerce, hotels, and restaurants 14.1%, banking, insurance 9.0%, communications 7.2%, construction 7.0%, agriculture, fishing, and forestry 3.2% (1991)
Unemployment rate:7.8% (December 1995) plus about 6% in training programs
revenues:$109.4 billion
expenditures:$146.1 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (FY95/96)
Industries:iron and steel, precision equipment (bearings, radio and telephone parts, armaments), wood pulp and paper products, processed foods, motor vehicles
Industrial production growth rate:11.7% (1994)
capacity:34,560,000 kW
production:141 billion kWh
consumption per capita:14,891 kWh (1993)
Agriculture:grains, sugar beets, potatoes; meat, milk
Illicit drugs:transshipment point for narcotics shipped via the former Soviet Republics and Baltic states for the European market
Exports:$61.2 billion (f.o.b., 1994)
commodities:machinery, motor vehicles, paper products, pulp and wood, iron and steel products, chemicals, petroleum and petroleum products
partners:EU 59.1% (Germany 13.2%, UK 10.2%, Denmark 6.9%, France 5.1%), Norway 8.1%, Finland 4.8%, US 8.0% (1994)
Imports:$51.8 billion (c.i.f., 1994)
commodities:machinery, petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, motor vehicles, foodstuffs, iron and steel, clothing
partners:EU 62.6% (Germany 18.4%, UK 9.5%, Denmark 6.6%, France 5.5%), Finland 6.3%, Norway 6.1%, US 8.5% (1994)
External debt:$66.5 billion (1994)
Economic aid:
donor:ODA, $1.769 billion (1993)
Currency:1 Swedish krona (SKr) = 100 oere
Exchange rates:Swedish kronor (SKr) per US$1 - 6.7240 (January 1996), 7.1333 (1995), 7.7160 (1994), 7.7834 (1993), 5.8238 (1992), 6.0475 (1991)
Fiscal year:1 January - 31 December (Sweden changed its fiscal year from 1 July - 30 June in 1995)


total:12,624 km (includes 953 km of privately-owned railways)
standard gauge:11,767 km 1.435-m gauge (7,320 km electrified and 1,152 km double track)
other:857 km NA-m gauge (1995)
total:135,859 km
paved:97,818 km (including 936 km of expressways)
unpaved:38,041 km (1991 est.)
Waterways:2,052 km navigable for small steamers and barges
Pipelines:natural gas 84 km
Ports:Gavle, Goteborg, Halmstad, Helsingborg, Hudiksvall, Kalmar, Karlshamn, Malmo, Solvesborg, Stockholm, Sundsvall
Merchant marine:
total:169 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 1,993,422 GRT/2,183,215 DWT
ships by type:bulk 10, cargo 35, chemical tanker 24, combination ore/oil 1, liquefied gas tanker 1, oil tanker 32, railcar carrier 2, refrigerated cargo 1, roll-on/roll-off cargo 38, short-sea passenger 7, specialized tanker 4, vehicle carrier 14 (1995 est.)
with paved runways over 3 047 m:2
with paved runways 2 438 to 3 047 m:7
with paved runways 1 524 to 2 437 m:85
with paved runways 914 to 1 523 m:26
with paved runways under 914 m:127
with unpaved runways 914 to 1 523 m:4 (1995 est.)
Heliports:1 (1995 est.)


Telephones:7.41 million (1986 est.)
Telephone system:excellent domestic and international facilities; automatic system
domestic:coaxial and multiconductor cable carry most voice traffic; parallel microwave radio relay network carries some additional telephone channels
international:5 submarine coaxial cables; satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean), 1 Eutelsat, and 1 Inmarsat (Atlantic and Indian Ocean regions); note - Sweden shares the Inmarsat earth station with the other Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, and Norway)
Radio broadcast stations:AM 5, FM 360 (mostly repeaters), shortwave 0
Radios:7.272 million (1993 est.)
Television broadcast stations:880 (mostly repeaters)
Televisions:3.5 million


Branches:Swedish Army, Royal Swedish Navy, Swedish Air Force
Manpower availability:
males age 15-49:2,133,816
males fit for military service:1,867,031
males reach military age (19) annually:51,357 (1996 est.)
Defense expenditures:exchange rate conversion - $5.8 billion, 2.5% of GDP (FY94/95)

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