The peculiarity of the Swedish economy is the role and importance of the cooperative movement in the country. It is distributed throughout the country and has a very strong position. Cooperatives have contributed to the transformation of Sweden from an agrarian to an industrialized, prosperous country. An important role played by the cooperative movement in agriculture, industry, retail trade, housing and other areas.
Cooperatives are divided into production and consumption. Production cooperatives with a total number of employed about 50 thousand people dominate the production of milk and meat, and occupy an important place in the manufacture of other products, as well as in pulp and paper industry. Consumer cooperatives employing 70 thousand people, of whom about half are the two largest, play an important role in the retail trade.
In the mixed economy, the cooperative movement acts as a "third force", or "third alternative" to private and public property, based on the principles of democracy and using the broad popular support. In some areas - especially among consumer co-operatives - Co-operation became countervailing force in the market for ordinary people, for example in matters of pricing. In the past, consumer cooperatives survived many battles with the private cartels. This role they play and now, albeit in less dramatic forms.
In the co-operatives in Sweden accounts for 5% of industrial production and all that 7,5% of employment in industry, 14% in retail trade and 5% of the total working naseleniya.V Sweden 2 / 3 of households in some way related to cooperatives. Consumer cooperatives account for 20% of sales of goods of daily demand. From 1 / 2 to 2 / 3 of the food consumed in Sweden is produced by farmers belonging to cooperatives, and milk and meat, this share is 99% and 80% respectively.
The term "cooperative" usually refers to an economic concept, based on joint action and mutual aid. The cooperative enterprise should have a direct connection with the needs and economic interests of its members. The principles of the cooperative movement: the freedom of membership - one can not be excluded, except in cases of violation of the statute; independence from political parties and faiths, democratic control - one member - one vote "; limiting returns on invested a share, cooperative society - an association of individuals and no capital accumulation of capital development and economic independence, educational activities, interaction cooperatives.
The cooperative movement emerged in Sweden in the second half of XIX century. But the decisive breakthrough came in the 90 years of the last century, and following him decades due to industrial revolution and the emergence of a growing working class in the new urban areas. The cooperative movement has found support among members of other popular movements: the "free" religious, temperance, peasants, workers - through its political and trade union units. In 1896-1899 gg. appeared more than 200 new consumer cooperative associations. In 1899 they formed the Cooperative Union (KF).
KF - a national organization of the Swedish self-governing societies, consumer cooperatives. The number of members gradually increased, and the number of societies decreased markedly as a result of mergers, with 950 in 1920 to 138 in 1987. Company differ in the number of members from 306 thousand to 67. All in all, consumer cooperatives in Sweden has 2 million people. KB is involved in trading, manufacturing, banking, publishing, tourism and educational activities. CP has more than 80 sales offices, including overseas, some food processing plants, particularly flour, bakeries, meat packing, brewing and canning, as well as several industrial enterprises.
Scope of cooperatives wide; than those mentioned there are housing cooperatives, insurance, travel, automotive, and even funerals.
Thus, cooperatives play a very important role in modern Swedish society. But occurred in 50-60 years, changes to the consolidation of economic enterprises to reduce costs have had an impact on cooperatives, as well as other types of business. This trend has become a serious threat to democracy in cooperatives. Currently, the cooperative movement seeks to strengthen the influence of rank and file members in the affairs of cooperatives.
Each socio-economic model and has created for specific purposes. In the Swedish model was paramount, social policy, which aims to create a more or less normal conditions for the reproduction of labor (especially skilled) - the fact of exceptional importance to Sweden, bearing in mind the specifics of its development and place in the international division of labor - and is a tool for reducing social tension, neutralization of class antagonisms and conflicts.
In the Swedish model of social policy contributes to the transformation of social relations in the spirit of social justice and equalization of income smoothing of the class inequalities and eventually build a new society based on democratic socialism, the welfare state.
The standard of living in Sweden is considered one of the highest in the world and the highest in Europe. Living standards determined by a complex of different indicators. GDP and consumption per capita, Sweden is one of the first places in Europe. For the equalization of income, Sweden is ahead of all other countries in the world. The ratio of women to pay the wages of men in Sweden, the highest in the world
According to one of the goals of the Swedish model - equity, revenues are aligned very progressive income tax system. Extensive redistribution through the social insurance system contributes to a significant reduction in income disparities. In 1986 in Sweden to 20% of households accounted for 37.5% of income on the poorest 20% - 12% (for the U.S., respectively 43,7% and 4,6%). Markedly reduced the pay gap between men and women in 1987, the average wage for women was 89.6% men's wages (for comparison: in Italy - 84,8%, Germany - 73% in the UK - 70.5%; Japan - 48.5%).
After prolonged growth of net (after tax) income in the postwar period, real (constant prices) net household income in 1981-1983. decreased. In 1984-1989. an annual average they grew by 2,2%. The real incomes of workers lagged behind the rate of growth of incomes of other segments of the population (eg, retirees). In 1950 the net income of households accounted for 70% of GDP. By 1989 this proportion had fallen to about 50%. Direct taxes and social security contributions from the population grew significantly faster than the reverse flow of remittances from the public sector to households.
More than half of households have ownership of tangible property and financial assets in the form of bank accounts, bonds, stocks and other requirements are about 40%. On cars, boats and other consumer durables account for another 10%. Property is distributed less equally than income, but over the past decade has been a noticeable trend towards a more uniform distribution. Distribution of property in Sweden, more even than in most other countries.
Indicators of living standards (per 1000 people.) In 1987
Countries GDP per capita (U.S. $) Telephone (pcs) Television (items) Cars (pcs) Consumption
elektroen-ies per capita (kWh) Unemployment (%)
Sweden 18876 890 393 420 1707 9 1.6
Germany 18280 640 379 463 6900 8.7
England 11765 524 346 318 5477 8.4
U.S. 18338 760 813 559 1120 4 5.4
Japan 19465 555 261 241 5733 2.5
France 15818 608 332 394 5870 10
Income in 1987
Size of income Number of Men Women Total
0 20 278 21 755 42 033
1-39 999 476 061 905 017 1 381 078
40 000-79 999 560 063 1 139 362 1 699 425
80 000-119 999 1 029 254 1 020 719 2 049 973
120 000-159 999 778 000 320 563 1 098 563
160 000-199 999 274 161 69 438 343 599
200 000-299 999 186 304 29 199 215 503
300 000-499 999 52 067 5 756 57 823
500 000 and above 10 707 1 227 11 934