113 Facts About Sweden


Sweden, officially the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Nordic country in Northern Europe.

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At 450, 295 square kilometres, Sweden is the largest Nordic country, the third-largest country in the European Union, and the fifth-largest country in Europe.

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When Sweden became involved in the Thirty Years' War on the Protestant side, an expansion of its territories began and eventually the Swedish Empire was formed, this became one of the great powers of Europe until the early 18th century.

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The last war in which Sweden was directly involved was in 1814 when Norway was militarily forced into a personal union, which peacefully dissolved in 1905.

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In 2014, Sweden celebrated 200 years of peace, breaking even Switzerland's record for peace.

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Sweden maintained an official policy of neutrality during wartime and non-participation in military alliances during peacetime, although Sweden secretly relied on U S nuclear submarines during the Cold War.

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Sweden has since 2008 joined EU battlegroups, provided intelligence to NATO and since 2009 openly moved towards cooperation with NATO.

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In 2022, Sweden applied for NATO membership and was formally invited to join the alliance at the NATO Summit in Madrid.

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Sweden is a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary democracy, with legislative power vested in the 349-member unicameral.

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Sweden maintains a Nordic social welfare system that provides universal health care and tertiary education for its citizens.

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Sweden joined the European Union on 1 January 1995 but rejected Eurozone membership following a referendum.

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Name for Sweden is generally agreed to derive from the root *e, meaning "one's own", referring to one's own tribe from the tribal period.

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Sweden's prehistory begins in the Allerød oscillation, a warm period around 12, 000 BC, with Late Palaeolithic reindeer-hunting camps of the Bromme culture at the edge of the ice in what is the country's southernmost province, Scania.

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Still, Sweden remained a poor and economically backward country in which barter was the primary means of exchange.

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Furthermore, when Sweden did develop, freed itself from the Hanseatic League, and entered its golden era, the fact that the peasantry had traditionally been free meant that more of the economic benefits flowed back to them rather than going to a feudal landowning class.

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Sweden pursued to strengthen Rome's influence by initiating Counter-Reformation and created a dual monarchy, which temporarily became known as the Polish-Swedish Union.

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Sweden rose to prominence on a continental scale during the reign of king Gustavus Adolphus, seizing territories from Russia and Poland–Lithuania in multiple conflicts, including the Thirty Years' War.

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Sweden reached its largest territorial extent under the rule of Charles X after the treaty of Roskilde in 1658, following Charles X's risky but successful crossing of the Danish Belts.

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In interest of re-establishing Swedish dominance in the Baltic Sea, Sweden allied itself against its traditional ally and benefactor, France, in the Napoleonic Wars.

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Sweden launched a military campaign against Norway on 27 July 1814, ending in the Convention of Moss, which forced Norway into a personal union with Sweden under the Swedish crown, which lasted until 1905.

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Nevertheless, Sweden remained poor, retaining a nearly entirely agricultural economy even as Denmark and Western European countries began to industrialise.

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Between 1870 and 1914, Sweden began developing the industrialised economy that exists today.

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Sweden was officially neutral during World War I However, under pressure from the German Empire, they did take steps which were detrimental to the Allied powers.

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Sweden allowed volunteers to fight for the White Guards alongside the Germans against the Red Guards and Russians in the Finnish Civil War, and briefly occupied Aland in cooperation with the German Empire.

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Sweden was under German influence for much of the war, as ties to the rest of the world were cut off through blockades.

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Sweden supplied steel and machined parts to Germany throughout the war.

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However, Sweden supported Norwegian resistance against Germany, and in 1943 helped rescue Danish Jews from deportation to Nazi concentration camps.

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Nevertheless, both Swedes and others have argued that Sweden could have done more to oppose the Nazis' war efforts, even if it meant increasing the risk of occupation.

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Sweden was officially a neutral country and remained outside NATO and Warsaw Pact membership during the Cold War, but privately Sweden's leadership had strong ties with the United States and other western governments.

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Sweden received aid under the Marshall Plan and participated in the OECD.

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Sweden was one of the founding states of the European Free Trade Area.

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In 2006 Sweden got its first majority government for decades as the centre-right Alliance defeated the incumbent Social Democrat government.

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Until recently Sweden remained non-aligned militarily, although it participated in some joint military exercises with NATO and some other countries, in addition to extensive cooperation with other European countries in the area of defence technology and defence industry.

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Sweden has a long history of participating in international military operations, including Afghanistan, where Swedish troops are under NATO command, and in EU-sponsored peacekeeping operations in Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Cyprus.

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Sweden participated in enforcing a UN mandated no-fly zone over Libya during the Arab Spring.

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Sweden held the chair of the European Union from 1 July to 31 December 2009.

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The Sweden Democrats held the balance of power and voted the government's budget down in the Riksdag, but due to agreements between the government and the Alliance, the government was able to hang onto power.

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Sweden was heavily affected by the 2015 European migrant crisis, eventually forcing the government to tighten regulations of entry to the country, as Sweden received thousands of asylum seekers and migrants predominantly from Africa and the Middle East per week in autumn, overwhelming existing structures.

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Sweden's formed a minority government made up of only her Social Democrats.

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The lowest elevation in Sweden is in the bay of Lake Hammarsjon, near Kristianstad, at -2.

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Sweden has 25 provinces or, based on culture, geography and history.

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Southern Sweden is predominantly agricultural, with increasing forest coverage northward.

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Northern and Central Sweden have several wide rivers known as, commonly sourced within the Scandinavian Mountains.

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Sweden is much warmer and drier than other places at a similar latitude, and even somewhat farther south, mainly because of the combination of the Gulf Stream and the general west wind drift, caused by the direction of planet Earth's rotation.

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Sweden has much milder winters than many parts of Russia, Canada, and the northern United States.

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Sweden receives between 1, 100 and 1, 900 hours of sunshine annually.

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Temperatures expected in Sweden are heavily influenced by the large Fennoscandian landmass, as well as continental Europe and western Russia, which allows hot or cool inland air to be easily transported to Sweden.

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Apart from the ice-free Atlantic bringing marine air into Sweden tempering winters, the mildness is further explained by prevailing low-pressure systems postponing winter, with the long nights often staying above freezing in the south of the country due to the abundant cloud cover.

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Sweden has a considerable south to north distance which causes large climatic difference, especially during the winter.

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Sweden had a 2019 Forest Landscape Integrity Index mean score of 5.

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Sweden has four fundamental laws which together form the Constitution: the Instrument of Government (Swedish: Regeringsformen), the Act of Succession (Swedish: Successionsordningen), the Freedom of the Press Act (Swedish: Tryckfrihetsforordningen), and the Fundamental Law on Freedom of Expression (Swedish: Yttrandefrihetsgrundlagen).

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Public sector in Sweden is divided into two parts: the legal person known as the State and local authorities: the latter include Regional Councils (Swedish: regioner) (renamed from county councils (landsting) in 2020) and local Municipalities (Swedish: kommuner).

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Sweden is a constitutional monarchy, and King Carl XVI Gustaf is the head of state, but the role of the monarch is limited to ceremonial and representative functions.

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Over 50 years, Sweden had had five parties who continually received enough votes to gain seats in the Riksdag—the Social Democrats, the Moderate Party, the Centre Party, the Liberal People's Party and the Left Party—before the Green Party became the sixth party in the 1988 election.

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Sweden's formed a minority government made up of only her Social Democrats.

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Sweden is a unitary state divided into 21 regions and 290 municipalities.

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Municipal and region government in Sweden is similar to city commission and cabinet-style council government.

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Up until the beginning of the 1920s, all laws in Sweden were introduced with the words, "We, the king of Sweden, of the Goths and Wends".

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In 1866, Sweden became a constitutional monarchy with a bicameral parliament, with the First Chamber indirectly elected by local governments, and the Second Chamber directly elected in national elections every four years.

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Sweden has a history of strong political involvement by ordinary people through its "popular movements", the most notable being trade unions, the independent Christian movement, the temperance movement, the women's movement, and the intellectual property pirate movements.

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Sweden was the first country in the world to outlaw corporal punishment of children by their parents.

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Sweden is currently leading the EU in statistics measuring equality in the political system and equality in the education system.

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Supreme Court of Sweden is the third and final instance in all civil and criminal cases in Sweden.

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Sweden has low levels of burglary, car theft and drug problems.

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Mid-November 2013 news report announced that four prisons in Sweden were closed during the year due to a significant drop in the number of inmates.

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Sweden's government pursued an independent course of nonalignment in times of peace so that neutrality would be possible in the event of war.

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However, Sweden indirectly contributed to the defence of Finland in the Winter War, and permitted the training of Norwegian and Danish troops in Sweden after 1943.

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Since 1995 Sweden has been a member of the European Union, and as a consequence of a new world security situation the country's foreign policy doctrine has been partly modified, with Sweden playing a more active role in European security co-operation.

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On 1 July 2010, Sweden ended routine conscription, switching to an all-volunteer force unless otherwise required for defence readiness.

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Sweden decided not to sign the UN treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

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Sweden is the sixteenth-richest country in the world in terms of GDP per capita and a high standard of living is experienced by its citizens.

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The vast majority of Sweden's industry is privately controlled, unlike many other industrialised Western countries, and, in accordance with a historical standard, publicly owned enterprises are of minor importance.

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In terms of GDP per-hour-worked, Sweden was the world's ninth highest in 2006 at US$31, compared to US$22 in Spain and US$35 in the United States.

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Sweden is a world leader in privatised pensions and pension funding problems are relatively small compared to many other Western European countries.

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Since 1990, taxes as a percentage of GDP collected by Sweden have been dropping, with total tax rates for the highest income earners dropping the most.

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Sweden is the top performing country in the 2014 Global Green Economy Index.

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Sweden is ranked fourth in the IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2013.

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Sweden maintains its own currency, the Swedish krona, a result of the Swedes having rejected the euro in a referendum.

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Sweden was a net importer of electricity by a margin of 6 TWh.

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Sweden joined the International Energy Agency in 1974, after the 1973 oil crisis strengthened Sweden's commitment to decrease dependence on imported fossil fuels.

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Sweden has moved to generate electricity mostly from hydropower and nuclear power.

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Sweden was the first nation to implement carbon pricing, and its carbon prices remain the highest in the world as of 2020.

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In 2014, Sweden was net exporter of electricity by a margin of 16 TWh; the production from wind power mills had increased to 11.

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Sweden had left-hand traffic from approximately 1736 and continued to do so well into the 20th century.

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The most used airport for a large part of Southern Sweden is Kastrup or Copenhagen Airport which is located only 12 minutes by train from the closest Swedish railway station, Hyllie.

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Sweden has a number of car ferry connections to several neighbouring countries.

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Ystad and Trelleborg near the southern tip of Sweden have ferry links with the Danish island of Bornholm and the German ports of Sassnitz, Rostock and Travemunde, respectively, and ferries run to Swinoujscie, Poland, from both of them.

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Sweden has two domestic ferry lines with large vessels, both connecting Gotland with the mainland.

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Sweden has one of the most highly developed welfare states in the world.

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Sweden began slowing the expansion of the welfare state in the 1980s, and even trimming it back.

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Sweden has been relatively quick to adopt neoliberal policies, such as privatisation, financialisation and deregulation, compared to countries such as France.

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Also since the mid-1980s, Sweden has had the fastest growth in inequality of any developed nation, according to the OECD.

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Since the late 1960s, Sweden has had the highest tax quota in the industrialised world, although today the gap has narrowed and Denmark has surpassed Sweden as the most heavily taxed country among developed countries.

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Sweden has a relatively high amount of sick leave per worker in OECD: the average worker loses 24 days due to sickness.

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Sweden was ranked second in the Global Innovation Index in 2019, 2020, and 2021.

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Since 1990, taxes as a percentage of GDP collected by Sweden have been dropping, with total tax rates for the highest income earners dropping the most.

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People who have worked in Sweden, but relocated to another country, can receive the Swedish pension.

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Sweden has one of the oldest populations in the world, with the average age of 41.

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Sweden was the second Nordic country to disestablish its state church.

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Islam's presence in Sweden remained marginal until the 1960s, when Sweden started to receive migrants from the Balkans and Turkey.

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The health care system in Sweden is financed primarily through taxes levied by regional councils and municipalities.

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Large influx of immigrants to Swedish schools has been cited as a significant part of the reason why Sweden has dropped more than any other European country in the international PISA rankings.

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Sweden received more refugees per capita than anywhere else in Europe.

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Immigrants in Sweden are mostly concentrated in the urban areas of Svealand and Gotaland.

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Since the early 1970s, immigration to Sweden has been mostly due to refugee migration and family reunification from countries in Asia and Latin America.

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In 2019, Sweden granted 21, 958 people asylum, up from 21, 502 in 2018.

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In 2021 one in five people in Sweden were born abroad.

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Sweden has become very liberal towards homosexuality, as is reflected in the popular acceptance of films such as Show Me Love, which is about two young lesbians in the small Swedish town of Amal.

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Since 1 May 2009, Sweden repealed its "registered partnership" laws and fully replaced them with gender-neutral marriage, Sweden offers domestic partnerships for both same-sex and opposite-sex couples.

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In 2007, with over 800 million dollars in revenue, Sweden was the third-largest music exporter in the world and surpassed only by the US and the UK.

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Around 1520 Sweden was out of the Middle Ages and united under King Gustav Vasa, who immediately initiated grand mansions, castles and fortresses to be built.

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Digital terrestrial television in Sweden started in 1999 and the last analogue terrestrial broadcasts were terminated in 2007.

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Sweden hosted the 1912 Summer Olympics, Equestrian at the 1956 Summer Olympics and the FIFA World Cup in 1958.

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