Military Belt-Tightening

The head of Sweden’s armed forces announced that 1,000 officers will lose their jobs by June 1 next year and that another 1,500 will be laid off in the future as part of the military’s cost cutting plan.

”The alternative of paying for redundant (employees) would entail a halt in our unit activities and we wouldn’t be able to fulfill our duties.”  Håkan Syrén, the supreme commander of the Swedish armed forces, said in a statement.

Last September, the government announced plans to revamp the military, closing bases, moving operations and saving some US$ 425 million in expenses.

The reorganization will aim to better prepare the Swedish military for current threats, Defense Minister Leni Björklund said at the time, pointing out that the armed forces have until now focused on the threat of an invasion from the now defunct Soviet bloc.