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Swedish report Swedish report
by Euro Reporter
2011-12-13 07:32:32
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Sweden industrial unions get 3% wage increase over 14 months

Swedish industrial unions and employers agreed on a wage deal to avert a potential labour strike after a deadline expired last month. Five unions representing 500,000 industrial workers agreed to a 3 percent wage increase over the next 14 months, the Swedish Association of Graduate Engineers, Unionen, IF Metall, GS and Livsmedelsarbetarefoerbundet said today in separate statements. The deal, which translates into a 2.6 percent annual pay increase, takes effect from Feb. 1.

Unions and employers’ organizations representing almost 3 million, or about two-thirds, of Swedish workers are or will negotiate pay deals by the end of next year with most current agreements expiring in March and April. Deals agreed on by industrial workers traditionally guide those in other areas.

Swedish salaries will grow an average 3.3 percent a year between 2012 and 2014, the central bank predicted on Oct. 27 as it kept its benchmark lending rate at 2 percent and forecast inflation will average 1.9 percent next year.

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New Wave group to cut 115 jobs


New Wave Group the Swedish developer of products for corporate promotions, gifts and home furnishings, plans to cut 115 jobs, starting in first-half 2012. The move will save about 24 million krona ($3.6 million) a year, the company said in a Monday statement. The cuts, set for Orrefors, Kosta and Afors, Sweden, will come mostly in production, New Wave said. The cuts stem from weaker sales at the Orrefors Kosta Boda glassware operations, New Wave said.

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Far-right extremists in Sweden pelted with eggs


Hundreds of right-wing extremists in Sweden where pelted with bottles, eggs and firecrackers as they marched through Stockholm on Saturday. Three people were injured and at least six people detained as riot police tried to keep angry counterdemonstrators away from the procession, police spokesman Anders Gillander said.

Ultranationalist groups opposed to immigration have staged similar marches in previous years in a Stockholm suburb where a skinhead was killed 10 years ago. Police said about 400 people participated in the march, and about as many counterdemonstrators, including far-left activists, showed up trying to stop it.

Two people in the far-right demonstration were hospitalized after being hit by objects thrown at them, while a counterdemonstrator was injured after a police van accidentally ran over her foot, Gillander said. None of the injuries were believed to be serious.

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Museum sells grenade-shaped ornaments


Visitors to the Swedish Army museum are questioning whether its hand grenade-shaped Christmas tree ornaments are in bad taste. The Stockholm museum is selling the ornaments to raise money for Christian Aid, a charity that combats poverty and helps with disaster relief.

"Support Christian Aid and their work for peace and against poverty by buying our Christmas ornaments which are a subtle reminder of those who are less fortunate than we are during the holiday season," the museum said in announcing the ornaments on its Web site. However, some museum visitors said they find the ornaments to be distasteful.

"Quite simply I think it's distasteful, especially if they are raising money for charity. This is a museum frequented by children and it's hard to explain to them why there are hand grenades in the Christmas trees," visitor Elinor Lindeborg said. "This is an Army Museum, but should still try to highlight a non-war perspective."



       
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