Agencies responsible for statistics
Sweden does not have a central authority for gathering statistical information. Instead, state authorities are responsible for collection within their respective areas. Statistics Sweden (Statistiska centralbyrån, or SCB) is then responsible for collating the statistics produced by the authorities.
Participating in the gathering of information may be voluntary, but in certain cases a business, according to the law, is obligated to submit information to the agencies responsible for statistics. The type of information that may be collected from entrepreneurs is detailed in the Official Statistics Act.
The official statistics must be public, free of charge and available in an electronic form as well as have a designation of Swedish official statistics.
When a company participates in a survey, it has the right to know:
- why its participation is important;
- how the results will be used;
- why the survey is being conducted;
- how the information is collected and processed;
- whether the survey involves a duty to submit information or is voluntary;
- that any information submitted is protected by the Swedish Secrecy Act;
- whom to contact for further information.
The information submitted is to be treated in accordance with a quality standard which ensures that:
- information is stored securely;
- no individual business may be identified on the basis of the statistics;
- the statistics are objective;
- the statistics are documented;
- the statistics are quality-controlled and are declared as such.
All companies registered in Sweden may be selected to submit information for statistical surveys. There are no special regulations for foreign-owned subsidiaries or branches. In general, larger companies are selected more often than smaller ones.
For official statistics, entrepreneurs submit information including:
- names and personal or corporate identity numbers of those running the business;
- production of goods and provision of services;
- number of employees, their employment, salaries and occupations as well as vacancies;
- orders, purchases, sales and deliveries of goods and services;
- prices of goods and services.
Entrepreneurs who work in agriculture, forestry, horticulture or animal husbandry submit information on:
- register designation;
- land use;
- ownership and lease conditions with regard to the property or the part of a property from where the business is run;
- the field of employment and year of taking up employment for the people involved in the business.
SCB arranges courses and seminars on the use of statistics.