Central government surplus of SEK 78 billion in 2021

Press release 11 January 2022

Swedish central government payments, as well as the central government budget balance, resulted in a surplus of SEK 78 billion in 2021. The Debt Office's forecast was a surplus of SEK 22 billion.

The Swedish economy has recovered from the negative drop in 2020 faster than expected, and the central government finances have strengthened. The economic recovery resulted in higher tax income and lower expenditure for the central government. Overall, this has led to a larger budget balance surplus than the Debt Office’s forecast in October. The surplus in 2021 was SEK 78 billion, the corresponding figure in 2020 was a deficit of SEK 221 billion.

Central government debt amounted to SEK 1 204 billion at the end of December, which was SEK 76 billion lower than in December 2020.

Deficit for central government in December

Swedish central government payments resulted in a deficit of SEK 76.3 billion in December. The Debt Office's forecast was a deficit of SEK 91.5 billion. The difference is mainly due to the Debt Office’s net lending being lower than expected. At the same time, tax income was higher than estimated, while payments from government agencies were lower.

The primary balance was SEK 8.0 billion higher than the forecast. Tax income was SEK 3.4 billion higher than estimated. Payments from several government agencies were lower than estimated, mainly from the Legal, Financial and Administrative Services Agency and the National Agency for Education. At the same time, the EU fee was higher than expected.

The Debt Office’s net lending to government agencies etc. was SEK 10.1 billion lower than forecasted in December. This is mainly due to higher deposits from Svenska kraftnät, the Deposit Insurance Fund and the Swedish Pensions Agency.

Interest payments on central government debt were SEK 2.9 billion higher than forecasted. The difference was due to bigger realized currency gains than expected.

The outcome for January will be published on February 7 at 9.30 a.m.

New forecast on the Swedish economy and central government borrowing will be published on February 24.

Budget balance and central government net borrowing requirement (SEK million)
1 The net borrowing requirement corresponds to the budget balance with opposite sign.
2 Sum of monthly forecast deviations since last forecast.
3 Net of the state's primary expenditure and income.
4 The net of government agencies etc. deposits and loans in the state’s internal bank. The net lending includes both current government operations and temporary occurrences which can be decided on short notice. The net lending affects the net borrowing requirement and central government debt, but is not covered by the Central government expenditure ceiling.
5 The outcome is preliminary and may be revised in connection with the Debt Office’s annual accounts. Please refer to the Debt Office’s annual report 2021 for the final annual outcome.
 OutcomeForecastDev.Acc. Dev.2Outcome
Budget balance -76 308 -91 527 15 220 55 524 77 839
Net borrowing requirement 1 76 308 91 527 -15 220 -55 524 -77 839
Primary balance 3 40 634 48 618 -7 984 -42 981 -2 638
Net lending to agencies etc. 4 33 123 43 249 -10 126 -13 859 -73 641
Interest payments on central government debt 2 551 -340 2 891 1 316 -1 560
  - Interest on loans in SEK 1 113 1 193 -80 -103 -1 287
  - Interest on loans in foreign currency -193 115 -307 -296 -912
  - Realised currency gains and losses 1 630 -1 647 3 278 1 715 639

Report: Central Government Debt December 2021

More data on the borrowing requirement and government debt

The monthly outcome of the central government net borrowing requirement is included in the official statistics of Sweden.

The Debt Office published their latest forecast on the Swedish economy and central government borrowing on October 27 2021: Forecast and analysis 2021:3


Press secretary, 08-613 47 01