Amazon to open three centres in Sweden

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has announced plans to make Stockholm a new infrastructure region for its cloud computing services by 2018. The IT giant will establish three data centres in Västerås, Eskilstuna and Katrineholm, all of which are within easy reach of the capital.

Start up companies such as iZettle, King, Mojang and Supercell as well as Ikea, Nokia, Scania and Telenor use AWS to help them run their businesses, reports DI.

Darren Mowry, Nordic manager for AWS, tells DN that Stockholm and the three towns have an infrastructure that suits the company, and the region is one of few in the world with such a concentration of talent. The company has also taken on board the fact that renewable energy sources account for 53% of the Swedish energy production.

Innovation and Enterprise Minister Mikael Damberg is optimistic, believing the move could create up to 200 jobs, and will place Sweden at the fore in the development of the digital economy.

DN lifts a warning finger, however, remarking that Amazon is infamous for its tax planning. According to DI Digital, in 2015 AWS reported a loss and paid zero kronor in taxes in Sweden. Darren Mowry assures DN that the company will “of course” pay all taxes required by law.

Bolund defends resolution fees

The government has plans to raise bank payments towards the bank reserve, which is intended to shield Sweden from the next financial crisis (ed.). Fresh figures from the Swedish Bankers’ Association (Bankföreningen) indicate that the bank reserve will amount to 200 billion kronor by 2030 as a result. This is ten times over the amount stipulated in the EU directive, but Financial Markets Minister Per Bolund (Green) defends the reserve.

“Sweden has a large and concentrated banking sector and this means that the risks are greater in Sweden than in other parts of Europe,” he tells DI.

The minister believes Denmark and the banking union made a mistake when they set the target level as low as they did, and points out that Sweden had to give Nordbanken a capital injection that amounted to 4% of GDP in the 1990s.

The bank resolution fees the banks will pay will go into the state budget and will not sit in a separate fund. Peter Malmqvist, chief analyst at Remium, is critical, saying that this is a tax levy in disguise, a claim the minister denies.