Deteriorating business climate in cities

The business climate in Sweden’s main cities has deteriorated sharply, according to the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise’s annual ranking.

In a survey of some 30,000 companies in the 290 municipalities, Stockholm has fallen to 123rd place, from 22nd place in 2014. Gothenburg ranks in 206th place, a new bottom score for the city, while Malmö, Uppsala, Linköping and Västerås have all hit their lowest rankings since the survey began in 2001.

Carola Lemne, head of the business federation, is concerned, given that the cities are engines of growth.

Johan Trouvé, CEO of Gothenburg’s Chamber of Commerce, believes the main problem is the attitude of the municipality’s bureaucrats. “They don’t understand the needs of the business world,” he says.

In Stockholm the problem is not just one of bureaucracy; a skills shortage, housing problems and inadequate infrastructure are other factors, according to Maria Rankka, CEO of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce.