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Known as Norsemen, Germanic people inhabited Sweden since prehistoric times. Vikings lived in the area to the 11th century after which Sweden began to unify as a Kingdom albeit with competition from other Nordic kingdoms.
In 1319, Sweden and Norway united, joined in 1397 by Denmark in the Kalmar Union which lasted until 1523. From 1611 Sweden expanded to form the Swedish Empire, conquering parts of Russia and northeast Europe. An attempt to invade Russia led to the disastrous Battle of Poltava in 1709 and it lost much of its empire in the 1721 Treaty of Nystad. Russia took Finland in 1809.
The country fought its last war in 1814 when Norway was forced into a union which was peacefully dissolved in 1905. Sweden maintained neutrality and managed to keep out of both World Wars, although was generally under German influence.
After World War 2 it has progressively built an industrialised economy but with agriculture remaining important. It joined the EU in 1995 after a fiscal crisis but rejected the Euro. Recently it has seen mass immigration.
Sweden is situated in the geographical region of Fennoscandia; geologically the Baltic Shield. It is separated from Norway on the west by the Scandinavian mountains. Southern and eastern Sweden comprises a flatter eroded region.
The Baltic Shield is the exposed northwest segment of the East European Craton composed mostly of metamorphic rocks and granites with many recent periods of glaciation and erosion.
Sweden has negligible volumes of identified indigenous oil or gas resources. For a period from 1974 the country produced very small volumes of oil from a series of fields with Ordovician reservoirs on northern Gotland; an island in the Baltic Sea. Although total output has never surpassed 250 bbls per day, small volumes may continue to be extracted intermittently. Onshore biogenic gas deposits are also being explored near the coast and shale gas shale potential is present which could eventually result in modest flows for local use.
Sweden has not produced oil or gas from its offshore waters and Globalshift it is unlikely to achieve any offshore production in the future.
Map and National Flag
Excel files - low-cost histories and forecasts of production and wells in any category for all countries and regions
Land area (sq kms)
Oil prod (000s b/d)
Gas prod (bcm/yr)
Oil cons (000s b/d)
Gas cons (bcm/yr)
Sweden is a monarchy. Although its head of state, the role of the monarch is limited to ceremonial functions.
Legislative power is vested in the 349-member unicameral Riksdag with elections held every 4 years.
The Mining Inspectorate issues permits for exploration and mining. The Geological Survey of Sweden (SGU) is the agency concerned with data on rocks, soil and groundwater.
Gripen Oil & Gas, a private company, is focusing on E and P in Sweden with a portfolio of exploration acreage on Gotland, Östergötland and Öland.
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