The Swedish Government has submitted a paper on state-owned companies to parliament which reports on the ownership and management in these companies’ operations in 2011. It was was a good year in terms of results, as they provided dividends to the treasury amounting to 28 billion SEK. The government managed 58 wholly- and partly-owned companies in 2011 with sales amounting to 337 bn SEK and profit after tax at 41 bn SEK. The total value of state-owned companies is now nearly 600 bn SEK (67,8 bn EUR).
But as well as generating revenue, the government has indicated that current and future generations want to work for, and deal with, companies that engage responsibly with the earth’s resources and respect human rights. In 2011, a reported 96 per cent of the state-owned companies achieved the required level of sustainability specified under the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) guidelines. The government is raising the level of ambition by integrating sustainability issues into ownership policies and ongoing corporate governance. The boards of state-owned companies may be asked to identify long-term and transaction-relevant sustainability objectives, and overall strategies for achieving these goals. It is also encouraging to note that in May 2012, 49 per cent of elected board members in state-owned companies were women, compared with just 24 per cent in public-held companies.
See also the interview with the CEO of Sveaskog in 2011 regarding the work with GRI.
For more information -The Swedish Government webpage