January 18, 2022
Sweden (Swedish pronunciation: [sværjɛ] (listen)), formally the Kingdom of Sweden ([ˈkôːnɵŋaˌriːkɛt ˈsvæ̌rjɛ] (listen)), is a constitutional monarchy on the Scandinavian peninsula in northern Europe. Sweden has a land border in the west with Norway, in the northeast with Finland and adjacent territorial waters to Norway in the west-southwest, Denmark in the southwest and Finland in the east. The country has coasts towards the Gulf of Bothnia, the Bothnian Sea, the Åland Sea, the Baltic Sea, the Sound, the Kattegat and the Skagerrak. Sweden has a population of 10.4 million inhabitants and is, with an area (including lakes) of 447,425 km², the geographically fifth largest country in Europe (if only the European part of Turkey is counted). The capital is Stockholm, the country's largest city with 1.4 million inhabitants. In addition, there are three other large cities according to Statistics Sweden's definition of a municipality with more than 200,000 inhabitants: Gothenburg, Malmö and Uppsala. About 87 percent of the population, an increasing proportion, live in urban areas with at least 200 inhabitants (in 2016). With the OECD definition - based on at least 50,000 inhabitants - only 41 percent of Swedes live in urban systems. Sweden is thus a distinctly rural country, with a low population density of 22 inhabitants per km² and with a higher density in the southern half of the country. Sweden is a constitutional monarchy with parliamentary democracy and a developed economy. The country has been a member of the United Nations since November 1946 and the European Union since 1 January 1995. Sweden or traditionally Svea kingdom from the Old Norse svíar, in itself probably from the Nordic Svitiod, first documented as Swēorice in the Anglo-Saxon Beowulf poem around the year 1000, originally referred to a kingdom of Swedes, a tribe in turn first documented by the Roman historian Tacitus in 98 e .Kr. The kingdom was Christianized during the Middle Ages and was recognized by King Inge the Elder by Pope Gregory VII in 1080. Later, both Swedes and Goths from around 1160 were included. Sweden was then part of the Nordic Kalmar Union 1397–1523. During the great power era of the 17th century, the country expanded militarily, but lost most of the areas outside the Scandinavian peninsula during the 18th and 19th centuries. The eastern half of the country, later Finland, was lost to Russia in 1809. The last war in which Sweden was directly involved was the Napoleonic Wars of 1814, when Sweden was granted Norway from Denmark into the Swedish-Norwegian Union, a personnel union that lasted until 1905. During the 20th century, Sweden's foreign policy was marked by military freedom of alliance. Despite this, the Swedish Armed Forces has participated in foreign military operations through the NATO Partnership for Peace and the EU's common security and defense policy. Swedish culture stands out in international value measurements with its individualism, humanism and secularism as well as with a great deal of trust in the state, politics and authorities among the citizens. Since the middle of the 20th century, Swedish economic policy has distinguished itself internationally for its large, high-taxing public resource distribution of the Swedish people's resources, both domestic and foreign, and for mixed economy (mixture of socialism and market economy). There is consensus between the social partners, known as the Swedish model. The country is ranked third in the world in The Economists 'Democracy Index (2020) and 7th in the United Nations' "Human Development Index" (2020). The country is one of the United Nations' largest contributors and one of the few countries to meet its aid targets of over 0.7% of GNI.