Recession Benefits Infrastructure in Sweden

October 26, 2009 Updated: October 27, 2009

STOCKHOLM—The Swedish government has invested several hundred million euros toward building roads and railways during this year and into 2010 as part of its attempt to lessen the negative effects of the recession.

Thanks to the recession, however, the projects have become some 150 million euros cheaper—with increased competition among bidders driving the price down, as well as a drop in the cost of raw materials.

The Swedish Road Administration, Vägverket, is responsible for Swedish roads. In this year's call for bids, 60 million euros has been saved through intense bidding competition.

"Investments in roads have been fortuitous during the recession,” said Lena Erixon, general director of Vägverket on the Swedish state radio Monday. “We get a lot of road for less money right now."

The money saved will go toward more road-building projects, as well as maintenance, Erixon said.

The Swedish Rail Administration, Banverket, has so far saved between 70-80 million euros on their projects this year.

"It's a matter of handling money in the best way possible, when it comes to the national economy,” said Minoo Akhtarzand, general director of Banverket on Swedish state radio, SR. “We need to put it to good use so that the whole country benefits."