Centre Party leader Annie Lööf speaking at the 2013 politicians' week in Almedalen. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/Scanpix

Lööf outlines plans to support entrepreneurs

The Centre Party is prioritizing jobs and the environment in the government's budget negotiations, Centre Party leader Annie Lööf said in her summer speech in Stockholm, on Wednesday.

"The entrepreneurs are our job creators," Lööf said.

Lööf said the Centre Party, which is part of the centre-right government alliance, would scrap the responsibility for companies to pay for employees' second week of sick leave, a requirement which critics say discourages employers from hiring staff. The estimated cost of this is SEK 2 billion.

"We need to move a larger part of the cost from companies to the State, as a first step by scrapping the second week of sick leave," she said. "It's important both because it reduces the risk involved in hiring someone new - and because it should be easier for those who have previously been off sick a lot or for long periods to get a job."

The party also wants to introduce apprentice programmes and double the support funds for companies that take on apprentices from SEK 30,000 to 60,000.

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