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Sweden

Statutory holidays: 25
Public holidays: 11

In Sweden, employees are entitled to 19 days of paid annual leave after nine months of employment and 25 days after a year on the job. The country also mandates 11 hours of rest between shifts and has strict limits on the number of overtime hours employees may work — with a maximum of 50 overtime hours a month permitted over a period of four months.

Public holidays in Sweden are often referred to as "red days," printed in red on most calendars. It’s common for some businesses to shut operations at noon the day before a holiday.

Despite such generous benefits, the country has an unemployment rate of just 6.9 percent, lower than the European Union average of 9.8 percent in October 2011. Sweden is home to such global giants as Ikea, H&M and Ericsson.

Photo: Frank and Helena | Getty Images