Sweden’s Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson said today that she needs very good and strong arguments to consider to apply for Swedish NATO membership. If she hasn´t got it now she will never get it. She is totally locked in in the narrow Swedish domestic political tactics. Her background is that she has been working at the Swedish Tax Agency for a long time. Her knowledge of the outside world and international politics seems to be close to zero. Her, and her government´s, naivety is a fundamental threat to the security of Sweden.

Today an opinion poll shows ,for the first time, that a majority of the Swedes want to join NATO.

Sweden is in a very vulnerable situation. Putin ,probably, do not dare to attack a NATO country but Sweden will definitely be a target or at least the island of Gotland. See the article below.


Lagerkvist & Partner’s customers, friends and people in Russia have always been more alarmist about Putin than anyone we know or read about / read in Sweden. In Finland, many agree with us.

The four planes that were inside Swedish airspace were a test of how alert the Swedish defense is in the first place.

Biden and the United States and NATO have been very clear that they will defend every ”inch” of their territory. When asked, like the English Minister of Defense, about heavy military aid to Ukraine, the answer, albeit a little wrapped up, is that you do not want to risk a full-scale war in Europe with Russia, which it would be if you shot down Russian planes . This is a clear answer for Russia. You can take Ukraine, Sweden and Finland and then sit still, without getting a counterattack. Cf. Crimea and Georgia. It will of course be a monster’s life and material help if you have time, but no more. You probably start with Sweden, which has a much weaker defense and will to defend than Finland, and you start taking Gotland, which probably takes less than a day. In Russia, Gotland is called the Baltic aircraft carrier. If you master Gotland, you master the Baltic Sea.

To believe anything other than this is naive. It also means that Putin can end his activities with ”honor intact” and, with some justification, present himself as a winner.

After this, Russia may have a more long-term strategy again with the Baltic states. We must remember that in Estonia 30% of the population is Russian-speaking but of Russian origin, in Latvia 34% and in Lithuania 6%. With a little time, Russia can rig a scenario where this ”Russian population” requests / demands that Russia ”save” them. It is possible here to create such a diffuse situation that it does not become as obvious that NATO will enter immediately. Furthermore, the world may then have become accustomed to the fact that Ukraine, Finland and Sweden – or at least Gotland and Åland are Russian.

Putin’s long-term goal is to recreate the old Soviet Union, an assessment many agree with, but most believe this ”will not happen.”

Date: 7th of March 2022, 11:30 AM

The energy crisis is the fault of politics

Swedish politicians have a hard time understanding that bad politics can give catastrophic results. Today’s debater Magnus Lagerkvist has worked with the Nordic region’s large energy companies, and reviews the decisions and attitudes that have given us the skyrocketing electricity prices.

The energy crisis we have seen in recent weeks is politically created. There are far too many examples of bad political decisions being serious. Uruguay was formerly called Latin America’s Switzerland, before political turbulence lowered the country’s good reputation among investors. The old communist states as well as several African states such as Zimbabwe, but also southern Italy, the American Midwest and other areas have had their opportunities sabotaged by bad politics.

In Sweden, we have felt liberated from this. ”We have known much better.”

We have increased aid and we are the country that pays the most net to the EU in relative terms. Margot Wallström has not done much good for Sweden, but she said one thing when she came home from the EU that showed an insight. To the questions about EU time, she answered, among other things, that:

”I hate when someone starts by saying ‘you know in Sweden we have a system’, and I never want to hear it again.”

The attitude Wallström criticized has been the attitude in the political system and among the naive EU parliamentarians from Sweden. We in Sweden are simply the best. If only everyone else did as we do in Sweden, the world would be fantastic.

We have completely lost the realization that the political system can destroy a country and, of course, least of all that it could happen in Sweden. Now we are in a process where this is on the way.

The current energy crisis is mainly due to:

  • We have shut down and continue to shut down nuclear power. The Riksdag was shocked when it decided that nuclear power would be shut down in 2025, with the actors starting to close their nuclear power plants immediately. Why? They simply had no understanding of the consequences of their other decisions regarding nuclear power. According to previous decisions, nuclear power plants must undergo extensive inspections every ten years, which cost several billion at a time. Furthermore, you have controls in between. If you can not have long depreciation periods of about 25 years, then the business does not pay off.
  • Wind power has been subsidized by 11.4 billion just since 2016 and it has never been profitable. When it is coldest or warmest, it does not normally blow at all, or only blows a little. The efficiency over the year is about 20 percent on the installed base.
  • Hydropower must not be expanded. Small-scale hydropower is also prevented from being expanded by the ”Green Khmers” on the county administrative boards – that is, by the officials who are also environmentalists. The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency gives Älvräddarna money so that they can hire lawyers who travel around the country in the legal system to stop development.
  • Hydropower is more than twice as accessible as wind power and in many cases can be stored.
  • Solar cells are subsidized despite the fact that they are inefficient in our climate and account for a nullity of our energy supply.
  • The distribution capacity between northern Sweden and southern Sweden is substandard and should have been expanded a long time ago. Everyone who works with these issues knows this.
  • Thorium technology, which is cheap, safe and where we have the raw material in Sweden and Norway, is not known. China and India are investing heavily in this.

All this will take a long time to repair. But the most important thing is that many of the obstacles lie in the fact that politics does not understand how things are done. Much can be remedied by emptying the county administrative boards of these administrators, disconnecting the courts and handing over all permit review to, for example, the Swedish Energy Agency. The legislation is mainly good.

Do you pursue a policy that is based on:

  • Stop nuclear power because it is dangerous.
  • Stop hydropower development to save fishermen and anglers.
  • Strongly subsidize wind and solar power that does not work when we need it most.
  • Do not expand and / or maintain distribution capacity, either nationally or locally.

Yes, then we will have a crisis that will last a long time. It will be interesting to see how this will affect the political system. It will be turbulent and GDP will go down.


Date: 23rd of January 2022


Published March 2nd at 1PM

The current and previous government, ie the one with Stefan Löven, in Sweden, are the worst we have experienced. But we must remember that it is the fault of the Center Party and the Liberals. They were the ones who made these governments come forward. A naivety bordering on the incredible.

The current Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson did not want to call an invasion an invasion, but certainly not how she would respond so she received a cheat sheet and then say that they were allowed to ”return.” Minister of Defense Hultqvist was to ”investigate” all questions and therefore did not give straight answers.

It’s a hot war going on.

It is obvious that it is the tactical situation in Swedish domestic policy that Andersson and Hultqvist relate to and they do not understand that it is serious and do not know at all how to act.

From the beginning, our Russian friends, customers and aides have been more worried than anyone we have met in Sweden. Taking Gotland to be able to make a pinch against the Baltics has been part of Russia’s plans all along.

If it becomes a hot war for us, our government will be an obstacle and not a help. We can do without them. The problem is that all parties have disarmed our defenses for decades. We would have needed Stig Synnergren, who was Lagerkvist & Partners’ first chairman, now. What a difference. We can still hope that the current military leadership can make the best of the situation.

We believe the Swedish people’s will to defend is great. Just like Ukraine. That is our hope, unless the nuclear weapons fall.

The government has now quickly changed footing and is sending munitions. We do not think it is due to empathy or a political will. They only make a tactical assessment. Shocked at what support the opinion polls show among the Swedish population for support with Ukraine. Then it is probably best that we keep up, they think and are less afraid when many other European countries have already sent weapons .. But it is not action. Hultqvist does not even know when the weapons will arrive and they are not of the strongest caliber. Do not talk. Do things.

As usual, we get to watch and admire the United Kingdom. As we usually say. Many countries are winning the peace. But when it comes to crisis situations and war, then England is to be trusted!

Everything is Connected – the Swedish Example

Four minus two equals one in the national budget!

The government has to realize that everything is connected. If costs increase, revenues are often decreasing.

The suggested decrease of the ROT deduction (a tax reduction for people hiring carpenters for repairs, conversions and extensions) in the national budget amounts to 5 570 M.SEK. The number of jobs that will move to the black economy is estimated at 7 901, at the least. This will result in lost government revenues in terms of income taxes, value-added tax (VAT) and unemployment funds amounting to 2 360 M.SEK, resulting in a budget deficit.

The suggested increase of the youth employment tax is forecast to give 10 300 M.SEK. Decreased tax and VAT revenues as well as increased transfer payments will be 4 900 M.SEK, which will also be a budget deficit.

The suggested increase of the taxes on gasoline and diesel are estimated at 3 820 M.SEK. However, there will be no increased tax revenues should the number of kilometers driven decrease by 5,67 percent for gasoline-driven cars and 7,74 percent for diesel-driven cars. While such changes are unlikely as most people need to use the car as they do today, this reduces the consumption capacity which reduces VAT revenues by 1 000 M.SEK. Moreover, those with lower disposable incomes will suffer the most.

When the ROT deduction and the RUT deduction (a tax reduction for people hiring someone for cleaning, maintenance and laundry) were introduced, 8 000 M.SEK was reserved for covering the costs. This amount was later increased to 14 100 M.SEK. However, the positive effects of the tax deduction have been estimated to be at least 16 000 M.SEK, and probably as much as 20 000 M.SEK, in increased governments revenues.

What happened was that part of the black economy became regulated, which gave these effects.

Politics has increasingly become focused on separate political issues. Fair income taxes; that is, identical social-security contributions and VAT rates. Downsizing the national defense. Investments in healthcare, education and welfare. Female representation in company boards for gender equality. Increased immigration to save the world and show solidarity. Increased fuel taxes to shield and preserve the environment. Et cetera, et cetera.

When running a company, you always have to see the broader picture to succeed. This also applies to a municipality, a county council or a country.

If you reduce maintenance costs in a company to save money, you will later experience more production stalls hurting customers. They will then choose another supplier, which reduces sales. Likewise, if you reduce product quality to make some extra money you will succeed for a while, but then your customers will realize it and then you have a problem.

If the restaurant and catering industry VAT, which was lowered in 2012, is raised again unemployment will increase and in this case we are talking about many jobs, perhaps as many as 100 000. The costs of society will increase more than the potential tax revenue. While this VAT raise did not enter the actual national budget, it was for a long time part of the agenda.

The national defense can be viewed as a pure expenditure. But if the security situation changes and rearmament is needed after many years of arms reduction, as is now the case in Sweden, the rearmament will cost more as earlier investments have been sold or destroyed.

Take the Swedish shipbuilding industry as an example: in the 1970s, the industry was given 60 G.SEK to keep it floating, after which it was shut down anyway at enormous costs. In Denmark, no support was given and all employees were dismissed whereas the boatyards were mothballed. When the shipbuilding industry began to bounce back and the market became promising again, the boatyards were re-opened. The Swedish support, however, was built on the premise that tax money could take the industry through the downturn – which, of course, turned out to be longer than expected – and that the government could reshape an entire industry.

As much as 80 percent of all carriage of passengers is by car. The car and the fuel are heavily taxed. Efforts to develop other means of transportation have required large investments, but without results. Efficient logistics is the key to the growth of a country. The relatively low tax on transportation in the United States is fundamental to its continuously strong economy.

Sweden seems to be the only country in the world that does not care whether company headquarters and domiciles move abroad. Former Prime Minister Göran Persson said, when Volvo Cars was sold to Ford, that it was a good thing. However, experience shows that, even though it might take some time, job opportunities move together with company headquarters. In 1990, Pharmacia had some 20 500 employees in Sweden. As a result of selling the company and moving its headquarters, there are only 1 300 people left today. Compare this to Finland, where everyone is helping in creating the right prerequisites and structures, as in the creation of Metso. Or consider Huthamäki, which moved to the Netherlands but was later tempted to return. The key is obviously reasonable conditions for companies and their employees in a global comparison, as well as constructive governmental initiatives.

Today, not many – especially in the political culture – understand how a company works and what forces affect decisions made within the company. Left-wing politicians such as Prime Minister Stefan Löfven dream of creating “real industry job opportunities”. But there will be no new industry job opportunities. While industry production continues to increase, industry job opportunities will continue to decrease. Increased industry productivity, however, spreads like ripples. The IT, service and consulting industries all essentially exist owing to a strong traditional industry. Who else should they be supplying their services to? If the prerequisites are not right, everything stops.

Finally, immigration: it contributes and can contribute a lot to Sweden and has done so for centuries. However, previous immigrants came here to work and started working for ASEA or Volvo immediately even though they could only speak Finnish, Italian, et cetera. Today, the Swedish kindheartedness has resulted in us having to take care of immigrants, which also have to learn Swedish before entering the workforce. This has made the system crackle. If you do not realize this or are unwilling to deal with the problems, you get the present political situation. Here, salary formation is a key factor.

Olof Palme once said – when Alva Myrdal, before the referendum about the Swedish nuclear power in 1980, decided to support Policy 3 (to phase out all Swedish nuclear power within ten years) – that “Alva is always singing with the angels”. We should preserve the Swedish kindheartedness, but we have to face and deal with the problems using a holistic approach.

Political decisions in one area that seem reasonable can have devastating consequences in another area.

We have to want and dare to see the connections and entirety of the matters discussed above and dare to take the consequences.

The outcome deficit in 2016 will be larger than predicted in the national budget. Then again, you can always cover this up by blaming the international conjuncture instead of analyzing the situation and dealing with the problems in their entirety!

The Logic of Taxes

To start with an observation concerning government. If you cut down on expenses or raise taxes it has consequences elsewhere. Which means that the outcome in the budget normally will not be what you think. Most European Government does not seem to have understood this.


If you cut VAT a couple of percentage ,people consume more and VAT income increase. If you raise social cost fewer people will be hired and personal tax income will go down and social costs go up.


You think this is simple! It isn´t. Most Prime Ministers and Finance ministers I have met does not understand this. When the deficit occurs one year later they will say: “The international conjuncture was against us! Sorry, we have to raise taxes.”