Internet Usage in Sweden around 2000

I think it was Altemark who remarked to me previously that he expected that one of the reasons that initiatives such as Piratbyrån and the Pirate Bay developed in Sweden before anywhere else was the high rate of internet access in Sweden at an early point, propelled in large by the Swedish government’s turn to investment in the emerging IT industry after the crash in the mid 90s.

Anyway, I was happy to find a quote which supports this in the Economist, Apr 27th 2000  (Nordic Netheads) stating:

WHO says entrepreneurs always go where the taxes are low? Sweden, where income taxes are among the heaviest in Europe, has become the continent’s hottest market for Internet start-ups, by some measures hotter than America. Over half of all Swedes are wired up to the Internet, compared with only one in five Germans. Stockholm, the capital, has 900 Internet companies, one for every 850 residents, and more than any other European city.

The article goes on to blather about the innovative anti-establishment spirit of these Internet start-ups,  and I’m forced to wonder how many of them survived the collapse of the IT bubble a year later?

This graph shows the effects of the IT bubble’s collapse in terms of very low growth in GDP after 2000.

Real GDP growth in Sweden, 1996-2006

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~ by swedishzine on September 22, 2009.

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