India and Sweden on Monday signed a social security agreement, which would help improve employment opportunities for citizens of both nations.
The signatories of the agreement were Shri Vayalar Ravi, Union Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs and Ulf Kristersson, Minister for Social Security of Sweden.
Kristersson said that India has around 156 Swedish companies operation and expressed hope that this agreement will encourage a large number of Swedish nationals to come to the country. He added that India is the first among the Asian countries to have signed this type of agreement with Sweden.
The Social Security Agreement will also enhance cooperation on social security between the two countries.
Around 18,000 Indians work overseas in Sweden as working professionals and self-employed. Owing to the huge labour supply gap in the market there is a huge potential for Indian workers to take employment in the country. Apart from improving employment opportunities, a bilateral Social Security Agreement between the two nations would help strengthen trade and investment between the two nations.
Among the benefits for Indian nationals working in Sweden are the:
a) For short term contract up to two years, no social contribution would need to be paid under the Swedish law by the detached workers provided they continue to make social security payment in India.
b) The above benefits shall be available even when the Indian company sends its employees to Sweden from a third country.
c) Indian workers shall be entitled to the export of the social security benefit if they relocate to India after the completion of their service in Sweden.
d) The self-employed Indians in Sweden would also be entitled to export of social security benefit of their relocation to India.
e) The period of contribution in one contracting state will be added to the period of contribution in the second contracting state for determining the eligibility of social security benefits.