Structural Challenges within the Swedish Military Supply of Personnel and Materiel


  • Per Olsson
  • Peter Bäckström
  • Mattias Johansson
  • Jens Lehman
  • Jens Lusua
  • Maria Ädel
  • Josefin Haaga

Publish date: 2018-05-15

Report number: FOI-R--4593--SE

Pages: 39

Written in: Swedish


  • Materiel
  • personnel
  • prioritisation
  • room to manoeuvre
  • cost
  • inflation
  • replacement rate
  • officers
  • conscription
  • recruitment


This study describes and problematizes a number of structural challenges for the Swedish military defence with regards to its supply of materiel and personnel. Within materiel supply the study identifies that the rapidly changing international security environment increases the need of room to manoeuvre in the balance between quality, cost and time during the life cycle of materiel. There is also a need to create increased availability through quick adaptation of materiel and access to military stock and reserve materiel. Furthermore, a clearly delimited definition of essential security interests is needed in order to reduce the risk of increased costs. In order to facilitate planning it is important to distinguish between performance driven cost development and inflation. The Swedish Defence Price Index also needs to mirror the defence specific conditions in order to avoid incorrect price compensation. Sweden has a relative high replacement rate of multirole fighters compared to other Nordic countries. Concerning submarines and surface vessels Sweden has multiple parallel classes with fewer platforms in relations to comparable countries. Both cases include risks of increased costs. Within the military personnel supply the study identifies that ensuring the supply of professional officers presents a significant challenge to the Armed Forces, both presently and long term. Even if the reinstated conscription constitutes an important tool to fill the ranks within the military basic education a large share of conscripts still need to voluntarily continue within the Armed Forces. This is an important prerequisite for the contracted personnel categories to be supplied over time. In addition, a number of limiting factors for an increased military basic education volume has been identified, for instance the access to instructors and education materiel, but also recruitment capacity. Furthermore, the voluntary recruitment of women shows continued weaknesses. The operative capability of military units is a decisive prerequisite for the country's defence. In order to be able to build capability over time coordination between personnel and materiel supply is needed. Such a build-up of capability must be balanced in relation to demands on readiness and availability. Therefore, it will become necessary to make well balanced priorities in order to strengthen operative capability in the short as well as in the long term.