The 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro Brazil or as it officially called, Games of the XXXI Olympiad, has now been in play for one week. So far it has been a great Olympic Games Event. 

We have seen many fantastic sports moments, amazing performances and surprise winners. Also the organization has been exvellent so far, despite the challenges leading up to the games. 

Sweden has been doing fine during the first week. We are place number 20 with five medals so far, one gold, three silver medals and one bronze. 

Our super-swimmer queen Sarah Sjöström has won a gold, a silver and a bronze on her own. She also broke the world record on 50 meters butterfly. She is a great athlete. 

We also have won silver medals by Emma Johansson in womens’ cykling road race and by Marcus Svensson in Skeet shooting. 

Our next chance for a Swedish medal is tomorrow when our golf star Henrik Stensson is going for gold.

Like most people I am thrilled by the original Olympic competitions, like e.g. Track and Field. Especially 100 meters running. Will he do it again, the great Usain Bolt? Tomorrow we will know. I love sports and I love the Olympics. 

The Vice President of the United States, Joe Biden will visit Sweden and Prime Minister Stefan Löfven on August 25th, Swedish government announced today.

I look forward to welcoming Vice President Joe Biden to Sweden. The relations between Sweden and the United States have rarely been as good as now, and I see his visit as a manifestation of this“, says Stefan Löfven in a written statement.

At the meeting, both bilateral and international issues discussed. The issue of global responsibility for migration and refugees is central to the agenda, according to the press release. Also represention and cooperation in international organizations will be discussed durkng the meeting.

This week I have been on mission to China. I have been going to China the ladt 20 years and it always exiting. The changes are enormous. I really like China. 

This week we have had meetings with colleagues and friends, partners and clients. 

China is amazing in so many ways. I like the people, the culture, the drive and the speed in the society. It is magic. 

China is the future. There is no doubt in my mind. Coming here and seeing the fast development gives a lot of positive energy and hope for the future. 

Security on the borders is constantly improving with new intelligent systems and innovative technology. Like in several of the leading airports of the world, Beijing International Airport has an efficient risk management based fast track for immigration and people security with automatic passport readers.

In China we have had discussions about common projects. 

The work of Customs, border management has so many dimensions and perspectives. Meeting likeminded and very proffessional people to talk about Customs and Trade makes my day any day of the week. This week we have had only good days. 

Vidar Gundersen. My boss. My colleague. My brother. One of my best friends the world. It is a great pleasure to work amd spend time with Vidar. He is fantastic. Here is enjoying the very hot and humid Beijing yesterday. And he really IS hot! Vidar is one the best people I have ever met on my life. 

We also – like every time – have had opportunity to taste the many deliscious Chine couisines. 

Two of our friends and colleagues, Cecilia and Vera. Excellent hosts.

The best ever HotPot. Spicy, strong and increadibly tasty. Deliscious! I really like strong and spicy food. This was one of the best meals I had in a long time.

One of the many faces of China, the largest economy on Earth – a blend between now and then, the future and the past. 

The countries with the highest quality of life have been announced by the not-for-profit organisation Social Progress Imperative.

Scandinavian nations scored highly in the “Social Progress Index,” but more surprising are the very large countries which came lower down the list — suggesting that a strong GDP per capita is not the only gauge for a high standard of living.

Despite this, all of the top 10 countries are developed nations — so having a strong economy clear has an impact.
The “Social Progress Index” collates the scores of three main indexes:
Basic Human Needs, which includes medical care, sanitation, and shelter. 

Scandinavian countries are doing fine as often in these types of studies.

Foundations of Wellbeing, which covers education, access to technology, and life expectancy.

Opportunity, which looks at personal rights, freedom of choice, and general tolerance.

The index then adds the three different factors together, before giving each nation a score out of 100. You can see the 10 countries with the highest quality of life below.

T-10. New Zealand — 88.45.

New Zealand’s tourist board calls it “the youngest country in the world,” and it is certainly one of the most beautiful. “Opportunity” is where it scores really high, as a low population means jobs are in abundance.

T-10. Iceland — 88.45.

Speaking of beautiful countries, Iceland scores very well in social progress, particularly in the “basic human needs” index and GDP per capita. Its football team has proven itself a force to be reckoned with too.

9. United Kingdom — 88.58.

The NHS is big part of the UK’s high placing, with “basic medical care” scoring almost 100% on the report. Education scores almost as highly, with free access to quality schools.

8. Netherlands — 88.65.

The Netherlands is famously one of the most tolerant countries in the world, so its position in the top ten should be no surprise. It is one of the highest-scoring countries on “personal freedom and choice.”

7. Norway — 88.70.

Get used to seeing Scandinavian nations in the top ten. Norway is big on “nutrition and basic medical care,” and its “access to basic knowledge” is strong too. Many have said the Norway model is one to follow for a non-EU UK.

6. Sweden — 88.80.

“Water and sanitation” may be taken for granted in developed economies, but it is not enjoyed everywhere. Luckily it is an area Sweden nails, scoring 99.77. The country also picks up high scores in “nutrition” and “personal rights.”

5. Switzerland — 88.87.

Switzerland may have some of the most expensive cities in the world to live in, but its citizens get value for money. According to the Social Progress Report, “medical”, “nutritional” and “access to basic knowledge” is where the country shines.

4. Australia — 89.13.

There is a good reason so many people want to start a new life “down under.” Austrailia has fantastic education, job opportunities and a strong sense of personal freedom. Its “tolerance and inclusion” score could be higher though.

3. Denmark — 89.39.

Denmark has one of the best social mobility and income equality rates in the world, so no surprise it makes it into the top three on this list. “Basic human needs” is where the country scores particularly highly, though its “health and wellness” stats such as life expectancy could be higher.

2. Canada — 89.49.

For such a huge nation, Canada only has 35 million citizens, and they are some of the best looked after in the world. Canada’s healthcare is what stands it above the rest. Education and opportunity in the country are also impressively strong.

1. Finland — 90.09.

Everyone says Scandinavian nations have the highest standard of living, and now Finland has made it official. It scores highly on almost every index on the report, from basic needs, foundations of wellbeing and personal freedoms. If you move there just make sure to bring warm coat — temperatures can reach minus 50 celsius​ in the winter!

Source: World Economic Forum

The UK Media is in love with Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Ibra has finally arrived to England and to the Premiere League. England loves it.

Today Zlatan Ibrahimovic makes his first appearance for Manchester United in a competition game, when Man U plays Champions Leichester in the Community Shield. 

The well known paper The Guardian, has written a great article in todays’ issue. 

The Guardian writes; ‘On his transfer from the French champions Paris St Germain to Manchester United in June, Zlatan Ibrahimović summed up his time in the French capital with typical understated modesty: “I arrived a king and I left a legend,” he said. As he described in his wonderfully unguarded autobiography I Am Zlatan Ibrahimović, the Swedish footballer grew up idolising Muhammad Ali; like Ali, he has not only always been his own greatest promoter, but he also loves nothing more than to back his talk with results. Now 34, Ibrahimović led the French club to its fourth consecutive league championship last year, scoring 38 league goals. He also created a lexicon all his own.

A primer published in France, Ainsi parler Zlatan!, (Let’s speak Zlatan!) celebrated the nuances of that idiom, mostly practised in after-match interviews. A Devil’s Dictionary of all things Ibrahimović, it offered an A-Z of the striker’s world, from “Air Zlatan”: “Zlatan does not fly first class or business class, only Zlatan class” to the verb “Zlataner”: “to crush, pulverise and dismember an opponent” (a definition now in the Swedish version of the OED).

It comes as no surprise in this sense that José Mourinho, the new Manchester United manager, made Ibrahimović his first  signing: they speak exactly the same language, a calculated mix of swagger, outrage and wind-up. Who else but Ibrahimović can you hear saying, for example: “If I’m not egoistic I will be a simple player and I don’t see myself as a simple player” or: “Sometimes I can’t help but laugh at how perfect I am.”

Winning 13 league titles across four countries over the past 15 years.

His subsequent grand tour of Europe has been a unpredictable mix of joy and rancour. There have been moments of genuine wonder; doubted for many years in Britain, Ibrahimović silenced critics by scoring all four goals as Sweden beat England in 2012, the last, an overhead kick from 40 yards, being among the most outlandish goals ever.
Ibrahimović is well aware of his box-office value. He has never forgotten feeling fleeced in his first contract with Ajax. “Money has never been important to me,” he claims.“But to be seen as the falafel boy you can cheat and make money out of – that made me furious.”

No player more resembles Eric Cantona, the piratical talisman of Fergie’s teams. The Frenchman welcomed Ibrahimović to his old club with the caveat that there “could only be one king of Manchester” – Cantona himself. Ibrahimović predictably raised the stakes in reply: “I will be God of Manchester.” 

Will Ibrahimovic create another success in Manchester ? I am absolutely 100% sure that he will. In May 2017 we will know.

In his first game for his new club, a frindly against Galatasaray, he scored his first goal on a overhead kick in the top corner after 194 seconds of the game. After only two days with the team. 

Tonight, in his first competition game for Manchester United, he scored the 2-1 goal in the 83rd minute of the Community Shield final against last years’ Priere League champions Leichester. Thus he won his first title for his new club. This was his 31st professional title. He had already before the game the record in soccer titles of all times having won 30 titles for his six past clubs. But Zlatan wants more. He is still hungry. 

If you want to read the entire article, click here: Article from The Guardian


There are now ninety (90) countries that have ratified the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA). 

Traders from both developing and developed countries have long pointed to the vast amount of “red tape” that still exists in moving goods across borders, and which poses a particular burden on small and medium-sized enterprises. To address this, WTO Members concluded negotiations on a landmark Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) at their 2013 Bali Ministerial Conference and are now in the process of adopting measures needed to bring the Agreement into effect.

The TFA contains provisions for expediting the movement, release and clearance of goods, including goods in transit. It also sets out measures for effective cooperation between customs and other appropriate authorities on trade facilitation and customs compliance issues. It further contains provisions for technical assistance and capacity building in this area. The Agreement will help improve transparency, increase possibilities to participate in global value chains, and reduce the scope for corruption.

The TFA was the first Agreement concluded at the WTO by all of its Members.

Here is a link to the ratification list of countries: List of WTO Members that have ratified the TFA