Sweden has a population of over 9.9 million, borders Norway to the West, Finland to the East and is connected to Denmark in the Southwest. Not only is it the 3rd largest country in the European Union by area, it is also the 7th richest country in the world in terms of GDP. From what was an agricultural economy in the 19th century, Sweden soon saw the beginning of an industrialized, urbanized country.
Branded for their modern, open and business friendly environment, they are in the forefront in terms of integrating a sustainable approach to business. As part of the EU, it means easy access to a market of 28 countries and approximately 500 million consumers. Sweden was ranked 4th most competitive in the WEF (2012-2013) and also ranked for having the best creativity in Europe for business and 6th easiest country in the world to trade with. Their key features include their openness and liberal approach to trade and them being an export orientated nation with a large trade surplus and emphasis on exports. Sweden’s competitive labor costs are due to their educated workforce; also considered the most productive and hardworking. The high usage of computers and IT systems also leaves Sweden 3rd on the Networked Readiness Index of the most networked economies in the world. This guarantees improved productivity especially with their extensive and fast internet infrastructure. Their growth in the information and communication technology (ICT) sector helps maintain competitiveness in Sweden’s goods and manufacturing. Sweden is now also known as one of Europe’s hottest start up cities for ICT companies.