Ensuring Sweden is prepared for future crises
The industry community is ideally placed to ensure Sweden’s resilience for the future. Saab AB, ABB AB, AB Volvo and Mölnlycke AB are partnering to help Sweden become a world leader in national preparedness.
In 2020, the pandemic highlighted the speed at which unforeseen events can challenge healthcare systems. Sweden, among other countries, was not prepared. Contingency stock had been scrapped and the lack of capacity in global distribution chains led to a shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE). No supplies could be guaranteed in a reasonable timeframe.
The government and health authorities turned to us as leading Swedish companies. Could we come to the aid of the healthcare system during the pandemic? Faster than anyone had thought possible, we pivoted and surged production – delivering millions of face masks, protective drapes, visors and other safety equipment. We shared our knowledge of logistics and purchasing and how safety and medical equipment works. And we highlighted where the weak links were and how security of supply could be ensured in the future.
Mölnlycke was delighted to be able to help in such a significant way. But like other leading Swedish companies, we realised that our competences could have been put to better use if we had systems and structures in place, clear stakeholders, and established forms of cooperation, where each company could focus on what they do best.
We have to learn the lessons of this crisis. Sweden needs to increase its resilience. The business community wants to be the answer - and we can deliver. Together, Saab AB, ABB AB, AB Volvo and Mölnlycke AB have submitted a proposal to build a modern concept of preparedness for Sweden.
Sweden has a world-leading industrial base, which can be used to produce modern and cost-effective solutions for future crises. Historically, it has always been recognised that the state and the business community each have an important role to play in crisis preparedness and crisis management. Certain so-called K-businesses were appointed to take an important production load during wartime, but the system was wound up during the 90s. This proposal builds on the K-business concept, but it has been updated and modernised for today.
The business community is ready to build security of supplies in Sweden for the future. The resources are in place. Together with responsible authorities, we are confident we can make Sweden a world leader in national resilience.
Zlatko Rihter, CEO at Mölnlycke shares his comments:
What does the proposal mean from a Mölnlycke point of view?
‘Mölnlycke has extensive experience and knowledge of sourcing and producing critical products as well as ensuring cost effective and long-term supply. Our joint proposal is a combination of modern and digital emergency stock with regional hubs on sites where modern industries and staff are already in place. That means we are less vulnerable and can be more flexible when required.’
Why does Sweden need this type of preparedness?
´The goal is to never run out of critical supply when we need them. We have all experienced the pandemic in both our private and professional life. If we can contribute our knowledge and products and ensure that our healthcare system is secure for future national emergencies, we will have done what we set out to do,´ Zlatko ends.
What will happen next with the proposal?
As industry, we have proposed how we can help create a modern, safe and cost-effective preparedness system in Sweden. It is now up to the Government and authorities to investigate what this means in practice. We are very happy to continue contributing our knowledge and experience.
Link to the debate article that was published online at DN 17 May 2021.
The proposal and the debate article come from Saab AB, ABB AB, AB Volvo and Mölnlycke AB.
Press contact: Jenny Johansson
Global Manager Corporate Communications
Mobile: +46 739 41 29 23