In the ongoing Corona crisis, many Swedish municipalities are too small to individually be able to purchase protective equipment, disinfectants etc at acceptable prices.
To solve the problem, the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SALAR), the coordination office of the County Administrative Boards, Region Stockholm, Region Skåne, Region Västra Götaland, the City of Stockholm, the City of Gothenburg, the City of Malmö and the Municipality of Uppsala have now taken a joint initiative.
These actors have instructed SKL Kommentus inköpscentral AB (SKI) to carry out joint purchases on a large scale for the Swedish municipalities. These purchases will be coordinated with the regions’ procurement processes to make the overall outcome as positive as possible.
In order to fulfill the task, SKI needs a targeted injection of resources in the form of a credit of SEK 500 million. Kommuninvest was asked about providing such a credit.
This type of lending, which is partially channeled to municipalities/regions that are not members of Kommuninvest, is not part of the business model. But in the present situation, Kommuninvest concludes that such concerns must be downprioritized. It is of utmost importance that all municipalities quickly get access to the protective equipment now required in health care, care and other activities.
“To cope with the Corona crisis, everyone has to help out. We are very happy to be able to contribute. In such a special situation, this feels like the obvious thing to do. The protective equipment should be swiftly purchased and distributed among the municipalities”, says Göran Färm, Chairman of the Board of the Kommuninvest Cooperative Society.
The credit of SEK 500 million will be interest-free. Guarantee commitments are in the first phase made by four municipalities: Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö and Uppsala. In the next phase, additional municipalities will get the opportunity to contribute to the financial set-up by entering into guarantee commitments of their own.
“We are always there for the municipalities and regions on financial matters. This is particularly true in hard times. Kommuninvest is fundamentally stable and has so far managed the crisis very well. To act a bit more broadly in terms of social responsibility is therefore a very logical step forward, ”says Tomas Werngren, CEO at Kommuninvest.