Country Risk

Defence agreement to deepen military ties between Sweden, Finland, US, but NATO membership remains unlikely

11 May 2018

Key Points

  • The trilateral statement of intent between Sweden, Finland, and the United States will serve to further deepen defence co-operation between these countries.
  • Russia is unlikely to retaliate unless the agreement opens the road to NATO membership or to the deployment of US forces on Swedish or Finnish territory.
  • The elections in Sweden and Finland in September 2018 and April 2019 will likely determine the future trajectory of military co-operation between the two Nordic countries and the US and NATO in general.


On 7–10 May, the defence ministers of Sweden and Finland – Peter Hultqvist and Jussi Niinistö – met with US Secretary of Defence James Mattis to discuss defence relations.

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