That dollar amount reflects a 19.2% increase compared to $166 billion in 2018.
Year over year, the overall value of Swedish exports rose 4.2% from $189.8 billion for 2021.
Sweden’s 5 most valuable exported products are processed petroleum oils, cars, medication mixes in dosage¸ blood fractions including antisera, and phone devices including smartphones. Combined, that quintet of major Swedish exports represents over one-fifth (21.6%) of the Scandinavian country’s total exports.
Based on the average exchange rate for 2022, the Swedish krona depreciated by -16.4% against the US dollar since 2018 and diluted by -17.9% from 2021 to 2022. Sweden’s weaker local currency made its exports paid for in stronger US dollars relatively less expensive for international buyers.
Biggest Trade Partners Buying Sweden’s Exports
The latest available country-specific data shows that 72.6% of products exported from Sweden were bought by importers in: Norway (10.7% of the Swedish total), Germany (10%), United States of America (8.9%), Denmark (7.5%), Finland (7.3%), United Kingdom (5.4%), Netherlands (4.8%), Poland (4%), France (3.9%), Belgium (3.6%), mainland China (3.5%) and Italy (3%).
From a continental perspective, 73.3% of Sweden’s exports by value were delivered to fellow European countries while 12.1% were sold to importers in Asia. Sweden shipped another 10.4% worth of goods to North America.
Smaller percentages went to Africa (1.7%), Latin America (1.5%) excluding Mexico but including the Caribbean, then Oceania (1%) led by Australia and New Zealand.
Given Sweden’s population of 10.7 million people, its total $197.8 billion in 2022 exports translates to roughly $18,500 for every resident in the north European nation. That dollar metric exceeds the average $18,200 per capita in 2021.
Sweden’s Top 10 Exports
The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Swedish global shipments during 2022. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Sweden.
- Machinery including computers: US$27.5 billion (13.9% of total exports)
- Vehicles: $24.3 billion (12.3%)
- Mineral fuels including oil: $21.5 billion (10.9%)
- Electrical machinery, equipment: $16.8 billion (8.5%)
- Pharmaceuticals: $13.3 billion (6.7%)
- Paper, paper items: $9.9 billion (5%)
- Iron, steel: $9.1 billion (4.6%)
- Plastics, plastic articles: $7 billion (3.6%)
- Wood: $6.2 billion (3.2%)
- Fish: $5.2 billion (2.6%)
Sweden’s top 10 exports accounted for well over two-thirds (71.2%) of the overall value of its global shipments.
Mineral fuels including oil represents the fastest grower among the top 10 export categories, up by 63% from 2021 to 2022.
In second place for improving export sales was pharmaceuticals via a 18.5% gain.
Sweden’s shipments of the metals iron and steel posted the third-fastest gain in value, increasing by 12.2%.
The leading decliner among Sweden’s top 10 export categories was wood, experiencing a -5.3% year-over-year fall.
Note that the results listed above are at the categorized two-digit Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) code level. For a more granular view of exported goods at the four-digit HTS code level, explore the following section Searchable List of Sweden’s Most Valuable Export Products.
Searchable List of Sweden’s Most Valuable Export Products
The following searchable table displays 100 of the most in-demand goods shipped from Sweden during 2022. Shown beside each product label is its total export value then the percentage increase or decrease since 2021.
|Rank||Sweden's Export Product||Value (US$)||YoY|
|1||Processed petroleum oils||$13,010,121,000||+40.4%|
|3||Medication mixes in dosage||$7,769,789,000||-3.1%|
|4||Blood fractions (including antisera)||$5,009,050,000||+83.4%|
|5||Phone devices including smartphones||$4,970,907,000||-8.2%|
|9||Whole fish (fresh)||$3,998,447,000||+10.9%|
|10||Iron ores, concentrates||$3,709,824,000||-21.4%|
|12||Chemical woodpulp (non-dissolving)||$2,505,858,000||-0.3%|
|14||Uncoated kraft paper||$2,342,984,000||+6.6%|
|16||Computers, optical readers||$2,008,745,000||-6.9%|
|18||Flat-rolled other alloy steel products||$1,860,500,000||+11%|
|19||Uncoated paper for writing/printing||$1,649,679,000||+19.5%|
|21||Flat-rolled stainless steel items||$1,552,855,000||+16.3%|
|24||Coal tar oils (high temperature distillation)||$1,336,963,000||+229.8%|
|26||Other diagnostic/lab reagents||$1,296,046,000||+3.6%|
|28||Physical/chemical analysis tools||$1,166,235,000||+1.9%|
|32||Centrifuges, filters and purifiers||$1,105,448,000||+2.8%|
|35||Refined copper, unwrought alloys||$966,510,000||+2.1%|
|36||Electrical converters/power units||$908,970,000||+8%|
|38||Initiators/accelerators, catalytic preps||$885,383,000||+14.5%|
|39||Liquid pumps and elevators||$879,856,000||+0.8%|
|43||Miscellaneous plastic items||$796,450,000||-6.4%|
|44||Taps, valves, similar appliances||$793,669,000||-2.2%|
|45||Dishwashing, clean/dry/fill machines||$782,727,000||-11.9%|
|46||Fish fillets, pieces||$739,284,000||+12.7%|
|48||Electric water heaters, hair dryers||$710,806,000||-5%|
|49||Cellulose fiber paper||$708,680,000||+6.6%|
|51||Pneumatic hand tool||$686,339,000||-16.2%|
|52||Iron or steel scrap||$661,404,000||+1.8%|
|53||Miscellaneous iron or steel items||$658,045,000||+8.3%|
|54||Other food preparations||$631,421,000||-9.6%|
|55||Hot-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products||$617,189,000||+1.2%|
|56||Alloy steel bars, rods||$616,163,000||+10.2%|
|58||Bread, biscuits, cakes, pastries||$595,467,000||-2.5%|
|59||Zinc ores, concentrates||$588,619,000||+19.2%|
|60||Lower-voltage switches, fuses||$584,098,000||-3.1%|
|61||Seats (excluding barber/dentist chairs)||$579,088,000||-11.3%|
|62||Electrical/optical circuit boards, panels||$576,365,000||+4.6%|
|64||Ball, roller bearings||$567,707,000||-5.4%|
|65||Miscellaneous iron and steel structures||$558,334,000||+9%|
|66||Electro-medical equip (e.g. xrays)||$551,565,000||-15.6%|
|67||Transmission shafts, gears, clutches||$550,525,000||-4.8%|
|68||Plastic packing goods, lids, caps||$540,563,000||-4.2%|
|69||Vulcanized rubber items||$535,750,000||-2.2%|
|70||Plastic plates, sheets, film, tape, strips||$530,733,000||+4.1%|
|71||Granules of iron or steel||$506,346,000||+31%|
|72||Alcohol (including spirits, liqueurs)||$502,510,000||+5.7%|
|73||Miscellaneous engines, motors||$498,479,000||+2.3%|
|76||Piston engine parts||$484,277,000||-3%|
|77||Nuclear reactors, fuel elements||$481,304,000||-35%|
|78||Polymer-based ion exchangers||$481,252,000||+6.5%|
|79||Aluminum plates, sheets, strips||$471,974,000||+8.5%|
|80||Electric storage batteries||$469,484,000||+13%|
|81||Chocolate, other cocoa preparations||$464,959,000||-0.5%|
|82||Pig iron granules, powders||$458,439,000||-13.9%|
|83||Tissues, napkins, toilet paper||$453,105,000||+8.7%|
|84||Chemical industry products/residuals||$430,568,000||-12.2%|
|85||Iron or steel tubes, pipes||$424,144,000||+17.5%|
|86||Wood carpentry, builders' joinery||$423,405,000||-8.3%|
|87||Hormones, miscellaneous steroids||$416,876,000||-0%|
|88||Plastic tubes, pipes, fittings||$416,602,000||-3.7%|
|89||Sanitary towels, baby napkins/liners||$412,405,000||+0.9%|
|90||Iron and steel screws, bolts, nuts, washers||$403,791,000||-5.3%|
|92||Other organic cleaning preparations||$395,725,000||-4.3%|
|93||Women's clothing (not knit or crochet)||$393,279,000||+11.6%|
|94||Vinyl chloride polymers||$386,327,000||-15.2%|
|95||Electric motors, generators||$385,505,000||-9%|
|96||Cermet plates, sticks, tips||$381,950,000||-18%|
|97||Chemical woodpulp (dissolving)||$380,818,000||+6.5%|
|98||Soil preparation machinery||$376,356,000||-4.8%|
These 100 exported goods were worth a subtotal of US$140 billion or more than two-thirds (70.8%) by value for all products exported from Sweden during 2022.
Products Generating Sweden’s Biggest Trade Surpluses
Sweden incurred an overall -$4.4 billion trade deficit for 2022, reversing a $2.7 billion surplus one year earlier in 2021.
The following types of Swedish product shipments represent positive net exports or a trade balance surplus. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports.
In a nutshell, net exports represent the amount by which foreign spending on a home country’s goods or services exceeds or lags the home country’s spending on foreign goods or services.
- Paper, paper items: US$7.8 billion (Up by 4.5% since 2021)
- Pharmaceuticals: $6.9 billion (Up by 30.6%)
- Vehicles: $4.4 billion (Up by 8.5%)
- Wood: $3.4 billion (Down by -19.2%)
- Ores, slag, ash: $3.2 billion (Down by -22.9%)
- Machinery including computers: $2.8 billion (Down by -8.6%)
- Woodpulp: $2.7 billion (Down by -2.4%)
- Iron, steel: $2.4 billion (Up by 4.1%)
- Gems, precious metals: $1.1 billion (Down by -7.6%)
- Copper: $824.5 million (Down by -0.6%)
Sweden has highly positive net exports in the international trade of pulp and paper. In turn, these cashflows indicate Sweden’s strong competitive advantages under the paper and related products category.
Products Causing Sweden’s Worst Trade Deficits
Below are exports from Sweden that result in negative net exports or product trade balance deficits. These negative net exports reveal product categories where foreign spending on home country Sweden’s goods trail Swedish importer spending on foreign products.
- Electrical machinery, equipment: -US$7.3 billion (Up by 17.8% since 2021)
- Mineral fuels including oil: -$6.9 billion (Up by 36.2%)
- Articles of iron or steel: -$2.1 billion (Up by 39.3%)
- Inorganic chemicals: -$1.9 billion (Up by 58.5%)
- Furniture, bedding, lighting, signs, prefabricated buildings: -$1.5 billion (Up by 26%)
- Knit or crochet clothing, accessories: -$1.4 billion (Up by 16.5%)
- Clothing, accessories (not knit or crochet): -$1.4 billion (Up by 41.8%)
- Meat: -$1.1 billion (Up by 31.3%)
- Beverages, spirits, vinegar: -$1 billion (Up by 16.4%)
- Rubber, rubber articles: -$996.9 million (Down by -6.6%)
Sweden has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits under the electrical machinery and equipment product category.
These cashflow deficiencies clearly indicate Sweden’s competitive disadvantages in the international electronics market, but also represent key opportunities for Sweden to improve its position in the global economy through focused innovations.
Sweden’s Major Export Companies
Twenty-six corporations rank among Forbes Global 2000. Below is a sample of the major Swedish companies that Forbes included.
According to global trade intelligence firm Zepol, the following smaller exporters from Sweden.
- Bulten Sweden (automotive parts, screws/bolts/nuts)
- First Cargo Sweden (automobiles, bicycles, rubber tires)
- Gelita Sweden (gelatin, salted/smoked meat, peptones/other proteins)
- Kappahl (textile footwear, clothing)
- Kendrion Hagalund (automotive parts, smoking tobacco, titanium dioxide pigments)
In macroeconomic terms, Sweden’s total exported goods represent 28.9% of its overall Gross Domestic Product for 2022 ($616.3 billion valued in Purchasing Power Parity US dollars). That 28.9% for exports to overall GDP in PPP for 2022 compares to 30.8% one year earlier. The latest percentage suggests a relatively decreasing reliance on products sold on international markets for Sweden’s total economic performance, albeit based on a short timeframe.
Another key indicator of a country’s economic performance is its unemployment rate. Sweden’s unemployment rate averaged 7.643% for 2022, down from an average 8.8% in 2021 according to the International Monetary Fund.
Sweden’s capital city is Stockholm.
See also Sweden’s Top 10 Imports, Sweden’s Top Trading Partners and European Union’s Top 10 Exports
Central Intelligence Agency, The World Factbook Country Profiles, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on March 30, 2023
Forbes Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on March 30, 2023
International Monetary Fund, Exchange Rates selected indicators (Domestic Currency per U.S. dollar, period average). Accessed on March 30, 2023
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on March 30, 2023
International Trade Centre, Trade Map. Accessed on March 30, 2023
Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on March 30, 2023
Wikipedia, Gross domestic product. Accessed on March 30, 2023
Wikipedia, List of Companies of Sweden. Accessed on March 30, 2023
Wikipedia, Purchasing power parity. Accessed on March 30, 2023
Wikipedia, Sweden. Accessed on March 30, 2023
Zepol’s company summary highlights by country. Accessed on March 30, 2023