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Working in Gothenburg?

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Gothenburg at a Glance

Working in Gothenburg

As many other port cities, Gothenburg is an important transportation hub for the whole of Scandinavia, with a local economy that is not only international and appealing for expats, but also extremely profitable and flourishing. In this guide, we introduce you to this economy, income taxation and more.

The Local Economy

Gothenburg is a key part of Sweden's overall economy. Its advantageous location in Scandinavia makes it an important transit point for shipping and trade through the region, and its port is responsible for much of its relatively high GDP of 36,365 USD per capita. The port of Gothenburg is now the largest, and one of the busiest and most profitable, in all of Scandinavia.

Gothenburg is also a major industrial city, and is the seat of many Swedish manufacturing firms, including Volvo (which is the city's largest employer), SKF, and Ericsson. Although manufacturing has traditionally been integral to Gothenburg's economy, the service sector is now of increasing importance to the city — banking, tourism, and finance are now all key elements of the local economy. Expatriates working in Gothenburg usually do so in technical positions in industry or shipping, in finance, or as English teachers.

Work Permits for Gothenburg

Whether or not you will need a permit to work in Gothenburg depends on your nationality. As Sweden is a member of the European Union, EU citizens will not need a permit to work in Gothenburg; however, they will need to register their residency with the Swedish Migration Board within 90 days of arriving.

Non-EU citizens will need a work permit, but this should not be an issue providing they have already secured work in Gothenburg and their employer can sponsor the application. Non-EU citizens will need to provide proof of residence in Gothenburg, and show that they will be able to leave once their employment contract has expired.

Taxation in Gothenburg

Expatriates working in Gothenburg will be required to pay income tax on their earnings. Residents of Gothenburg, meaning those who have permanent residency or live in the city for more than six months in a year, will pay tax on their worldwide income. Non-residents will only pay tax on income earned while working in Gothenburg and the rest of Sweden. Sweden has a progressive tax system, where how much income tax you pay depends on your earnings. The rates for 2014 were as follows:

Sweden does have a scheme in place to provide tax relief for expatriates, depending on their place of work, earnings, and citizenship. Expatriates working in Gothenburg may be eligible for tax relief if they are specialists, qualified scientists or experts with scarce knowledge and skills, or key senior employees. This tax relief reduces salary tax, and subsidizes expenses related to schooling, moving to Gothenburg, and visits to your home country.

InterNations Expat Magazine