The NHL has come to a new agreement with the Swedish Federation, which will allow players in Sweden to wait until the age of 22 to sign an entry-level contract with the team that drafts them, according to a post on the Swedish Ice Hockey Association's official website.
Previously, NHL teams were required to sign Swedish draft picks within two years of their draft class year.
After engaging in discussions with the NHL and NHL Players' Association, the SIHA has persuaded the league to extend that limitation to the age of 22. The hope is that the SIHA can continue to grow and develop by having it's best players stay for a longer period of time.
Under the new agreement, a player drafted at 18 will have four years to sign an entry-level contract with the team that drafted him. Players drafted at 19 will have three years, players drafted at 20 will have two years, etc.
In the posting on the SIHA website (read with the aide of google translate), the organization thanked both the NHL and NHLPA for appreciating their requests. The NHLPA appears to be singled out as being particularly helpful of the cause.