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Panorama econòmic

Economic indicators

For the latest updates on the key economic responses from governments to address the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, please consult the IMF's policy tracking platform Policy Responses to COVID-19.

Despite Sweden's exposure to global trade dynamics, Covid-19 has had a rather limited impact on its economy compared with most other European countries. In 2021, the continued rebound of consumption and investment contributed to an estimated growth of 4% (with the economy returning to its pre-pandemic level by the third quarter of the year). GDP growth is projected to reach 3.4% in 2022, before easing to 2.8% as the post-pandemic catch-up dissipates, with private consumption as the main growth driver (IMF).

Sweden is among rare advanced economies to show both a current account surplus and low public debt in Europe. Monetary and fiscal policies have been supportive since the outbreak of the pandemic, hence the government budget turned negative (-2.4% of GDP in 2021). The 2022 budget increases spending by SEK 74 billion (1.5% of GDP), and includes tax cuts for low-income earners and grants to municipalities to fight the pandemic. A rise in revenues and increased GDP will balance these expenses so that the IMF forecasts the deficit to gradually decrease to -0.7% this year and -0.2% in 2023 (grants from the EU Recovery and Resilience Facility should total around 0.2% of GDP in 2022 and 2023). The country’s debt-to-GDP ratio, although still low, reached 39.6% in 2021, from a pre-pandemic level of 34.9%, and is expected to gradually decrease over the forecast horizon (39.9% and 39% in 2022 and 2023, respectively). Driven largely by higher energy costs, inflation stood at 2% in 2021 but is projected to fall below Riksbank’s 2% target this year (1.6%).

Job creation was impacted by Covid-19 as the services industry slowed activity even when Sweden opted against nationwide lockdowns. The government's compensation schemes limited further unemployment, which was estimated at 8.9% in 2021 by the IMF, while wages, which are largely centrally negotiated, have increased only slightly faster than before the pandemic. The rate is projected to decrease to 7.9% this year and 7.7% in 2023. Overall, Swedish citizens enjoy a high per capita GDP of USD 55,566 (PPP – 2021), 18.5% higher than the EU’s average (USD 46,888), and the European Anti-Poverty Network (EAPN) estimates that only 2% of Sweden’s population lives in serious material poverty conditions.

 
GDP Indicators 202020212022 (e)2023 (e)2024 (e)
GDP (billions USD) 547.05635.66e603.92653.96693.15
GDP (constant prices, annual % change) -2.25.1e2.6-0.12.1
GDP per capita (USD) 5260e566063
General government balance (in % of GDP) -1.6-0.3e-0.30.11.1
General government gross debt (in % of GDP) 39.236.8e33.531.228.8
Inflation rate (%) 0.72.77.28.43.5
Unemployment rate (% of the labor force) 8.58.87.67.47.3
Current Account (billions USD) 32.2434.0223.0722.6924.29
Current account (in % of GDP) 5.95.43.83.53.5

Font: IMF – World Economic Outlook Database, 2016

Note: (e) Estimated data

 
Monetary indicators 20162017201820192020
Swedish Krona (SEK) - Average annual exchange rate for 1 EUR 9.119.6610.2610.6710.52

Font: World Bank, 2015

 

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