The Church of Sweden manages its financial assets to fulfil the requirement of a satisfactory return. Investment is subject to ethical considerations, in accordance with the fundamental values of the Church.
Financing the work of the Church
The work of the Church of Sweden is mainly financed through the church tax that all members pay. The amount of the church tax is determined locally in each parish. The total costs each year amount to about SEK 19 billion, and because the main activities are conducted in parishes and associations, most of the costs are there. Local variations are considerable as regards what parishes use the church tax for.
Read more about the activities and economy of the Church of Sweden in the Annual Report.
Asset management for the national level of the Church of Sweden
The Church of Sweden has a buffer capital, as is the norm with any comparable undertaking. This can be used in crisis situations and secures our activities. This capital, of about SEK 5 billion, is managed at the national level of the Church of Sweden.
Asset management is performed within a defined financial policy, which states that capital shall be managed in an ethically defensible way in accordance with the fundamental values of the Church of Sweden. This means that in its asset management, the Church attempts to identify companies which contribute to sustainable global development and also generate a satisfactory financial return. Some companies are excluded (for example, weaponry and tobacco manufacturers), as their business concepts conflict with the values of the Church. Special assessments are also made in respect of companies connected with alcohol, pornography, gaming and fossil energy sources. Read more about our work with responsible investment.
Apart from asset management at national level of about SEK 5 billion, assets are managed separately at diocese and parish level. The Church of Sweden also has non-profit-making holdings and foundations which have their own management.