🎣 Fine fishing
To: Riedia Readers
|January 24, 2023||Sign Up|
Good Morning! Today is Tuesday, January 24th. In today’s Riedia Sweden Morning Digest, we are covering:
🧑💻 Spotify joins the list of tech layoffs, the prime minister's right-hand person punished for eel-poaching, the ambassador of Estonia expelled for “russophobia,” new rules on startups’ taxation, and more Swedes required for war.
– Julia Powanda, Viviana Levet, Xuecong Liu, Melker Ferdfelt
The need for military personnel in Sweden is increasing rapidly.
According to figures from the Swedish National Service, at the end of 2022, approximately 400,000 Swedes were stationed at war, an increase of almost 20 percent in six months.
And there will be more, according to the Swedish Agency for Community Safety and Preparedness (MSB). Now, private companies will have to deploy more employees to military service places.
For this, MSB will help employers identify which personnel could and should be deployed in case of war or emergency. After this, the company will decide which employee is being deployed, and the ones selected won’t be able to refuse.
It is not clear how many deployments will be needed. Nonetheless, there’s a significant need to increase the capacity of total defense.
What does being selected for war placement mean?
When an employee has been selected for war placement, during peacetime nothing changes. However, if the government decides on strengthening preparedness and instructs general duty, the employee selected is obliged to serve under high alert. Then the person may not leave the country, change jobs, or resign.
The idea behind the increase in military deployments is to improve the overall military defense.
by TT | edited by Riedia
Peter Magnus (P.M.) Nilsson, one of Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson’s closest employees recruited last October, has received a penalty order for illegally fishing eels.
He was caught eel-poaching in the Karlskrona archipelago in September 2021 by the Swedish Maritime and Water Authority. However, the problem escalated before Christmas 2022, when he denied the allegations, and later came forward and confessed the crime to the authorities.
Now, the Social Democrats are raising the question about having a person that misleads the police and does not hold respect for Swedish law, working so close to the government as State Secretary.
Additionally, this fact has raised concerns among the ones that claim that Prime Minister Kristersson knew about the eel fishing when he hired P.M. Nilsson as state secretary.
However, Kristersson acknowledged the mistake and said that it was a stupid thing for Nilsson to do.
A “fine” punishment
Since 2007, in Sweden, private individuals are not allowed to fish for eels without a permit because they are considered an acutely endangered species.
Therefore, P.M. Nilsson has received a penalty order for violating the Fisheries Act, which involves daily fines of a total of SEK 38,000.
by TT | edited by Riedia
The streaming service Spotify is now the next tech giant to reduce its workforce significantly. The Swedish company has announced that it will get rid of six percent of its employees.
According to CEO Daniel Ek, this difficult decision was necessary for the company’s development and growth, after Spotify's running costs increased twice as fast as revenue growth in the previous year, which was no longer sustainable.
In addition to the staff cuts, the Swedish giant is announcing organizational changes as well.
The company’s downsizing means a reduction of costs of approximately 35-45 million euros. The announcement comes after the news agency Bloomberg previously reported that cutbacks were underway.
A long line of tech giants has recently announced major staff reductions. Google’s parent company Alphabet just announced recently that 12,000 employees would be let go. Additionally, Amazon, Meta, and Microsoft have also issued unusually large layoffs in the name of reducing costs.
by TT | edited by Riedia
Japan is facing the most serious security situation in the region since the Second World War, according to Prime Minister Kumio Kishida. Therefore, a historic armament of the country's military has been promised.
New defense strategy
The new defense strategy aims to keep China's ever-growing territorial ambitions in line, according to Tokyo. Japan wants to be able to counter-attack any threat and speed up the development of radio reconnaissance that can detect incoming missiles from hostile neighbors like North Korea.
At the same time, the subject is sensitive to many neighboring countries in regions whose population was the victim of Japan's aggression during World War II.
“Just a precaution”
In December 2022, Fumio Kishida's government adopted a number of security and defense reforms, which differed drastically from the strictly neutral and peaceful self-defense principle which has prevailed since the end of World War II, when a ban on a regular military force was included in the country's constitution.
According to Kishida, this "drastic turnaround" of the country's security policy is only a security measure, and Japan will still be driven by a pacifist constitution and strict anti-nuclear policy. The Japanese leader is hoping for a continued dialog with Beijing and President Xi Jinping.
by TT | edited by Riedia
What else is happening in Sweden?
🏢 The government wants to review the rules on taxation of small companies with the aim to promote entrepreneurship, according to Finance Minister Elisabeth Svantesson, from the Moderates Party. This could impact about 300,000 companies in Sweden.
⚛️ A Swedish quantum computer has been under construction at Chalmers in Gothenburg for a few years. Now the researchers are on the move with one more, a copy that can be used by Swedish companies and researchers.
🚄 Easter train tickets will be delayed . SJ press officer Tobbe Lundell says that the delays are because the Swedish Transport Administration has not finished planning the railway work. However, the company says that they have put systems in place to prevent prices from skyrocketing as they did over the Christmas holiday.
What else is happening in the world?
🇧🇫 Burkina Faso wants French soldiers to leave the country within a month, according to a diplomatic letter from the Burkina Faso authorities to Paris. France has 400 soldiers stationed in Burkina Faso to fight a jihadist uprising, but relations between the countries have deteriorated recently. Since the current military regime took power in September, there have been several demonstrations demanding that the French ambassador and the French troops leave the country.
🇪🇪 The Estonian ambassador has been expelled from Russia since the invasion of Ukraine. According to the Kremlin and a statement from the Ministry of Defense in Moscow, Estonia has deliberately destroyed relations with Russia because of a "total russophobia". Estonia has responded already to this Russian message by expelling the Russian ambassador in Tallinn.
🇳🇴 According to the Norwegian media, former Wagner soldier Andrei Medvedev, who fled to Norway from Russia earlier in January, has been arrested with the support of the Foreigners' Act. The detention is described as a security measure and is not necessarily meant as a punishment.
Meanwhile, in Stockholm
🚔 A suspected object has been found in a villa garden in Tumba, southwest of Stockholm. The police received the alarm at about eight o'clock Monday morning. Nearby homes have been evacuated for bomb technicians to investigate the object. At the same time, police state that there is no danger to the public and no one has been injured.
💻 A Säpo (Swedish Security Service) employee is being prosecuted for a data breach after making unlawful searches in the agency’s computer system. The woman will be tried in Solna District Court, and the prosecutor will ask for a fine.
🏥 Two billion extra crowns have been allocated to emergency hospitals in Stockholm by the Left party. At the same time, demands are being made to reduce administrative and staff costs.
🎿 Zebastian Modin , a 28-year-old Swedish athlete, claimed his first career medal in para-ski shooting on Saturday, and just a day later, he and his guide Daniel Richardsson dominated the 18 km distance race in Östersund, securing his third career World Championship gold medal, and his first in this distance.
⚽ Cristiano Ronaldo, the soon 38-year-old Portuguese, may not have lived up to the high expectations that come with being one of the greatest players of our time and with his annual salary of SEK 2.2 billion, as he failed to score or assist in his debut match for his new team Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia.
🖐️ Sweden's national handball team secured a 32-30 victory against Portugal in a thrilling match, boosting their confidence heading into the quarter-finals. Eric Johansson and Daniel Pettersson were the standout players and their goals led the team to victory. This win, added to their previous win against Iceland , gives Sweden a 6-0 record in the tournament, putting them one step closer to the world champion title.
Spotify is one of Sweden’s best-known companies. With nearly 456 million active users and 195 million premium subscribers. But what does Spotify even mean??
Well as it turns out, the founders don’t really seem to know either. As the story goes, founders Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon were shouting names at each other from the other side of a house checking to see which domains were available. Ek misheard what Lorentzon shouted, and the name Spotify was born.
They decided after the misunderstanding to say that the name is a combination of spot and identity .
by Julia Powanda/Riedia
Made with 💛 in Stockholm
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