Sweden's Enterprise State Secretary, has hailed the importance of the country's supplier base as the overall economic situation starts to improve gradually both in Europe and globally.

Addressing around 450 delegates at last week's Scandinavian suppliers association, FKG's, Annual Forum in Gothenburg, State Secretary, Hakan Ekengren, also noted strong international competition placed more demands on politicians.

"This whole industry, whether a supplier or if you assemble parts, this is a very important sector for the country," said Ekengren. "I am convinced it will remain a very important component of our economy.

"We see from a macro-economic perspective, the global and debt crisis lasted five years. We can also see the situation in the markets [has] stabilised to a large extent, but however, the situation is still worrying.

"There are very difficult rules of the game - it is a free market - this puts high demands on us in politics so we have the economic pre-conditions for companies."

Ekengren added despite the greater optimism, his government believed it would take around another year before there was "clear recovery."

The Secretary pointed to Sweden's position as one of Europe's strongest economies, but cautioned it also had to be able to cope with the undoubted demands of any upturn.

"We need to ensure we have good conditions in Sweden to deal with this recession and to be able to deal with the boom, which hopefully is around the corner," he said.

The politician also emphasised the government would continue to invest in vehicle clusters around Sweden, while conceding pressure had successfully been brought to save the once-threatened supplier programme.