Jyrki Katainen. Photo: Yves Logghe/AP/TT
European Commission vice-president Jyrki Katainen. Photo: Yves Logghe/AP/TT

EU concerned about Swedish household debt

The European Commission is concerned about the "imbalance" on the Swedish housing market, as well as the relatively high household debt.

In an interview with the daily Dagens Nyheter, the European Commission's new Vice-President as well as the commissioner for Economic Affairs, Jyrki Katainen, said the commission will review the situation. He said "no one says Sweden has acute problems in any area" but that "The example of Greece shows that a crisis can spread in Europe also from a small country with a limited economy. That is why we want to work against the imbalances in good time".

The commission reviews macro-economic imbalances in all the member countries. At the moment, Italy, Croatia, Portugal, Rumania and Slovenia are deemed to have the biggest problems, while France, Ireland, Spain and Hungary end up in the second highest risk group. Sweden, along with Belgium, Bulgaria, Finland, the Netherlands, the UK and Germany, is in the group with least micro-economic imbalances. The concern is mainly about the high level of household debt, which is far above the EU commission threshold value, but also about the large Swedish surplus in the balance of payment and the dip in export market share.

Jyrki Katainen visited Sweden to present the European Commission's new investment plan, to try to boost jobs in Europe.

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