17:17 GMT12 June 2021
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    As a result of two consecutive referendums, Swedes have found themselves in a peculiar position in the European Union. While ranking among the staunchest supporters of the EU, Swedes chose to stick to their own currency, the krone. Recent polls suggest that Swedes haven't changed their mind over the past decade.

    Swedes remain pro-EU, but against introducing the euro as Sweden's national currency, a survey by Statistics Sweden (SCB) revealed. However, the survey also indicated that resistance to both the EU and the euro is decreasing compared with previous polls.

    A whole 70.6 percent of the Swedes surveyed stated that they would vote down the perspective of introducing the euro as a currency in Sweden, as opposed to only 16.5 percent who would gladly adopt the euro and 12.9 percent who claimed to be unsure. However, this nevertheless indicates a minor increase in the proportion of supporters compared with November 2016, when 72 percent were against the euro and 15.8 percent were in favor. Similar polls are conducted every May and November by the SCB.

    Despite their unrelenting opposition to the euro, the majority of Swedes remain loyal EU supporters. A total of 54.5 percent of the respondents said they were in favor of a continued membership in the EU. EU antagonists clocked 19.2 percent, whereas a whole 26.3 percent joined the waverers. Compared with the previous measurement, the proportion of EU supporters has increased somewhat.

    Sweden joined the EU following the 1994 referendum, where a slim majority (52.3 percent vs 46.8 percent) voted in favor of the EU accession. The referendum went down in history as one of the most polarizing in Sweden, as the Nordic nation was literally split in half, with southerners backing the EU and northerners supporting independence. This division is largely preserved today, with the anti-EU sentiment seething in northern Sweden.

    In late May, the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung threw Sweden into a tizzy by claiming the EU leadership has ulterior motives of coercing all member states to switch to the euro by 2025. Although the shock was somewhat dampened by Euro Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis's soothing rhetoric, the perspective of being drawn into the Eurozone nevertheless stunned the Swedish establishment. Subsequently, several Swedish statesmen and columnist ruled out the idea of forcefully abandoning the Swedish national currency.

    Formally, Sweden meets all economic requirements for joining the Eurozone, but has made no attempts towards the single currency ever since it was rejected during the 2003 referendum by 55.9 percent of the Swedes. Today, several of Sweden's political parties favor joining the Eurozone.

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    Tags:
    Eurozone, EU, Scandinavia, Sweden
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