The Laval Case and the Future of Labour Relations in Sweden

Sciences Po, January 2009

19 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2009

See all articles by Alban Davesne

Alban Davesne

Sciences Po - Centre d'Études Européennes (EEC)

Date Written: January 2009


Together with a series of related ECJ cases (Viking, Rüffert), the Laval case became famous as a new display of the struggle between economic freedoms and social rights in the EU. But the European controversy is only one part of the story. Focusing on the Laval case, this article goes back to the place where it all started - Sweden - and tries to shed light on the missing link between the European controversy over posted workers and the challenges that the Swedish labour model is currently facing. The Swedish labour relations system has now to cope with legal uncertainty while the government, the employers and the Trade Unions are increasingly struggling over labour regulation. Beyond its juridical aspects, the Laval case is thus a landmark political event, as it unveils and increases the turmoil of the Swedish autonomous labour relations. It thus displays a new opportunity for reforming industrial relations and labour regulations in Sweden, in a time when they are as much pressured at home as they are admired abroad.

Note: Downloadable document is in French.

Suggested Citation

Davesne, Alban, The Laval Case and the Future of Labour Relations in Sweden (January 2009). Sciences Po, January 2009, Available at SSRN: or

Alban Davesne (Contact Author)

Sciences Po - Centre d'Études Européennes (EEC) ( email )

27 Rue St. Guilllaume
Paris, 75007

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