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Timofejevs, Peteris

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Diena - Latvia | 15/09/2006

Sweden votes

Peteris Timofejevs stresses that, despite what can almost be described as the hegemony of the Social Democrats in Sweden, the country is still regarded as a model state in which there is broad social consensus. Yet in spite of the country's strong economic performance, the government led by Göran Persson is now facing the real prospect of an election defeat. "The Social Democrats have had to put up with a lot of criticism, not only for their poor management of the Tsunami disaster in 2004, but also because of their ineffectual labour market policy. Officially, the labour market is not governed by laws, but the Social Democrats have created a system in which trade unions and employers' associations play a key role, and this model is perceived as too rigid… The Swedes now face an interesting choice: Should they vote for the Moderates who promise to create more jobs, or for the Social Democrats who offer them a security that smacks of stagnation?"

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