Sweden is a highly developed industrial country with a strong knowledge-based service sector. Due to the availability of raw material, traditional manufacturing industries still play an important role in the Swedish economy. Sweden maintains the manufacturing industry through highly specialized and research oriented companies. However, the service sector is now the largest employer in Sweden and accounts for more than 75 percent of the Swedish workforce.
As an EU member state, the Swedish market is strongly integrated with the European market. Sweden is one of the world-leading nations in research, in areas such as biotechnology, medical innovations, microelectronics and space. Sweden also has internationally leading companies and technology in areas like ICT (Information Technology & Communication) and green technology like waste management, renewable energy, energy efficiency, sanitation & hygiene. The Swedish market is highly developed and competition is fierce. For this reason, it can be difficult to enter the Swedish market but once you have established good business relationships, great business opportunities may open up. The price awareness and the purchasing power are high on the Swedish market and the consumers are used to a relatively high quality in both products and standard of living. Ethics and gender equality are strong trends on both the business to consumer and business to business market.
The Swedish Market FAQ
- Population: 9.6 million
- Business Language: Swedish, English
- System of Government: Parliamentary Democracy, Constitutional Monarchy
- Climate: Temperate Zone (cold winter and short summer)
- Area: 450,295 km2
- Forest area: 260,000 km2
- Agricultural area: 35,000 km2
Trade rules & regulations
Sweden as a member of the European Union share the trade rules and regulations with the other 26 member countries. Developing countries benefit from preferential treatment when exporting to Sweden through The Generalized System of Preferences (GSP). The Swedish trade rule of GSP is in accordance with EU GSP and preferential treatment means that industrial products are entitled to duty reductions when a developing country exports to Sweden. The purpose of the GSP trade rule is to promote exports, and thus economic growth, in developing countries.Other Swedish trade rules and regulations is the extension of GSP, the so-called Everything But Arms initiative, which means that the Least Developed Countries have been granted duty- and quota-free access for all products under GSP.
For further information about Swedish Trade Rules and Regulations – visit Open Trade Gate Sweden and Export Helpdesk. You will also find a general overview of the Swedish trade rules and regulations in Exporting to Scandinavia.
Swedish business culture
Entering a new market requires long-term planning and substantial efforts. This includes understanding business culture and commercial practices. When talking about business cultures, the first thing to remember is that there is no real right or wrong.