Sweden's richest. Sweaty Swedes get no help. Dead people to receive bar codes? One in five born abroad. Tenants making way for refugee children.
In spite of the recent stock market dip, there is no lack of billionaires in Sweden. Only three people fell off last year's list of Veckans Affärer's billionaire list. And the top three this year are the same that topped the list last year: Ingvar Kamprad (IKEA founder), Stefan Persson (chairman and main shareholder in fashion company H&M) and Hans Rausing (son of Tetra Pak founder Ruben Rausing). So why haven’t their riches diminished? Well, one explanation might be that they own real estate, and that kind of fortune hasn’t been much affected by the crisis. The ones who have felt the crisis are the part-owners of retail trade. Persson, though he was saved from being kicked off the list by owning property, had his fortune decrease by 20 billion SEK ($2.7 billion). Mary Haid (daughter of Clas Ohlson, founder of hardware store chain Clas Ohlson AB) has seen her riches go down 23 percent this year. Onoff’s main owner is one of the three who’s been dropped from the list. The reason is Onoff (a retail chain that sold home electronics and white goods) filed for bankruptcy earlier in the year. Also off the list is Bertil Lindqvist, a major shareholder in Diamyd, Medirox and PA Resources, and financier Mats Arnhög. Three women are on the top-ten list. In fourth place, with 45 billion SEK ($6.2 billion), is Antonia Ax:son Johnson, president of the Axel Johnson Group, which owns, among other things Åhlens and Axfood. Tetra Pak's Hans Rausing’s daughter Kirsten Rausing is in seventh place and Lottie Tham, Stefan Persson's sister, is in eighth place.
Sweaty Swedes get no help
If you are a Swede suffering from sweating, don't expect any medical help. Thousands of Swedes suffering from excess sweating must now travel abroad in order to receive treatment. When the county council decided the treatment of excess sweating was too expensive, the patient according to European Union directives, does have the right to get medical help in other EEA (European Economic Are) countries, which, according to daily Svenska Dagbladet, means that the bill ends up with Försäkringskassan (the Swedish Social Insurance Agency). That clinics in Sweden are forced to turn patients down, also means that all medicine must be thrown out. In May of this year, Sophiahemmet in Stockholm threw out medicine for excess sweat at a value of SEK 350,000 ($49, 324).
Dead people to receive bar codes?
Should dead people be given a bar code to prevent their body from disappearing or ending up in the wrong grave? According to P4 Dalarna (a Swedish radio station), that’s what the country’s cemetery administrations suggest. The idea is for the code to follow the person from death to the funeral and sound off an alarm if a mistake happens on the way. Sveriges kyrkogårds- och krematorieförbund (Sweden’s organization for cemeteries and crematories) will turn in a report regarding the proposal to the government this fall.
One in five born abroad
Every fifth inhabitant of the city of Gothenburg was born abroad. Daily Goteborgs Posten did a study in 2007, and again recently, and it shows that in the past five years the number of neighborhoods with more than 40 percent of foreign-borns has doubled. Most of them live in the northeastern parts of the city. “The newly arrived only have access to a very small part of the housing market,” says Professor Roger Andersson at Uppsala University.
Tenants making way for refugee children
A couple Swedish families are being forced to move from their government owned apartments in Grums in Värmland to prepare space for refugee children coming to Sweden alone. As a result xenophobic propaganda is spreading in the neighborhood. The apartment building where the refugee children are currently living, which is owned by the same governmental company, will be sold or torn down, so local authorities don’t see any alternatives. “When we need apartments for these sorts of things, then we have the possibility to move tenants,” says Annika Lomarker, managing director for Grums Hyresbostäder.
Suffering from excess sweat in Sweden? Don’t expect any medical treatment.