(Det talade ordet gäller)
Ladies and gentlemen,
First, let me thank our host, ambassador Per Thöresson, for a most pleasant evening and a rewarding discussion.
Germany and Sweden have strong ties – and have had so for centuries.
This is evident not least in my own family: My mother was born in Heidelberg. Her father, Walther Sommerlath, was German and worked for a Swedish company, Uddeholm. And on my father’s side, my grandmother, Princess Sibylla, was born in Gotha and became a Swedish princess. So there is definitely a part of me that feels at home here!
Our two countries are indeed strongly connected; not only by the past, but also by the present and, hopefully, the future. Germany is Sweden’s largest business partner today. About 11% of our export goes to Germany. And about 20% of our import comes from – Germany!
Sweden might be a small country, but it is a leader in smart industry. I hope this evening will lay the ground for further cooperation in this area.
Represented here tonight are some of Germany’s most important industries and some of Sweden’s most innovative start-ups. Bringing you together is a certainly a good idea. What you have accomplished in your companies is truly fantastic! But the really great ideas are the ones that you will come up with together, as partners.
I look forward to hearing more about those ideas in the future and taking part of your journey.