Parties seek to woo overseas voters

Despite their low numbers, overseas voters could hold some sway over Sweden's upcoming national elections, news agency TT reports.

Swedish expatriates have been sought after by parties who are shoring up as many voters as they can before the September 14 poll. For instance, the Sweden Democrats held a speech in Oslo, the Green party campaigned in New York City and the ruling Moderate Party send out letters to those living abroad.

But very little is known about where overseas voters stand on the political spectrum and just how many of them will cast their ballots.

"We pay no particular attention to them," Peter Santesson, head of research at the polling group Demoskop, told TT. "It is clear that one would want to access it, but methodologically it is completely unmanageable. These are the people that are impossible to track down."

More than 159,000 Swedes are currently living abroad and registered with the Swedish Tax Agency and are thus eligible to vote in parliamentary elections. That is 2.2 percent of the total vote, making the constituency living abroad larger than five of the country's 29 constituencies.

Overseas voting cards and materials for postal voting were sent to Swedes who emigrated and were reporting their tax address abroad at the end of July.