Doing business

Current business situation

The Swedish economy is in good health and growing robustly. Nevertheless, households are increasingly taking on large mortgage debts that might cause trouble, and the sheer size of the financial sector together with its central role in the region in itself calls for intensified supervision (Source: IMF, Sweden, November 2016).

Business culture

Generally speaking business culture in Sweden is similar to that in Australia. There are differences and the following will assist in developing good relationships:

  • It is advisable to seek appointments well in advance of your visit.
  • Punctuality is required both for business and social appointments.
  • General greetings are by handshake, stating clearly both your first name and surname.
  • It is customary to offer your business card at the commencement of a meeting.
  • Decision-making is frequently by consensus, on the spot decisions are rare.
  • The annual vacation period occurs from late June to beginning of August, appointments will be difficult to arrange and applies to the Christmas and New Year period.

Setting up in Market

Business Sweden has information for those considering setting up a business.

Banking and finance

Sweden has over 100 banks and the financial sector is one of the most important growth industries. The four largest banks account for 75 per cent of the total market:

  • Handelsbanken
  • Nordea
  • SEB
  • Swedbank.

Links and resources

Government, business and trade

Business Sweden
The National Board of Trade
The official site of Sweden
Swedish Customs
Swedish Parliament

News and media

Dagens Industri (Swedish only)
Dagens Nyheter (Swedish only)
The Local

Svenska Dagbladet (Swedish only)

Please note: This list of websites and resources is not definitive. Inclusion in this list does not imply endorsement by Austrade. The information provided is a guide only. The content is for information and carries no warranty; as such, the addressee must exercise their own discretion in its use. Australia’s anti-bribery laws apply overseas and Austrade will not provide business related services to any party who breaches the law and will report credible evidence of any breach. For further information, please see foreign bribery information and awareness pack.