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Swedish labour remains unionized

The Swedish labour market is still highly organized

About 90% of employees are covered by collective agreements, and a similar percentage of employers are organized. The unionization rate has stabilized at around 70%, but with increasing differences between white-collar and blue-collar workers.

Nearly 70% of employees in Sweden are members of a trade union, but in recent years, there has been a clear difference in unionization rates between blue-collar and white-collar workers. In 2022, the unionization rate for blue-collar workers decreased from 62% to 59%, while the rate for white-collar workers remained unchanged at 74%. The overall average unionization rate is 69%, according to preliminary data.

The high level of organization among both employees and employers is crucial for the strong position of collective agreements in Sweden. Collective agreement coverage in the private sector is 82% in 2021, and the overall coverage rate for the labor market is 88%. In 2021, 81% of all private sector employees worked for companies affiliated with an employer organization, while 65% of private sector employees were unionized. The employer organization's unionization rate was 17 percentage points higher than the employee unionization rate. In the same year, union members accounted for 70% of all employees, while employer organizations covered 87% of all employees.

Further details at the Medlings Institutet in Swedish