Government of Sweden
Sweden is a constitutional monarchy with a representative democracy based on a parliamentary system. The affairs of Government are decided by a Cabinet of Ministers, which is led by a Prime Minister. The Cabinet and the Prime Minister are responsible for their actions to the Parliament of Sweden.
Head of Government
Main article: Prime Minister of Sweden
- Head of Government: Prime Minister Göran Persson (since March 21, 1996)
- Cabinet: Ministers are appointed by the Prime Minister and confirmed by Parliament
- Elections: The Prime Minister is first appointed by the Speaker of Parliament and then confirmed (with the cabinet ministers) by Parliament
- Election results: Göran Persson is elected Prime Minister forming a Social Democrat minority government. After the general elections in 2002 the Social Democrat Government continues to depend on the Left Party and the Green Party to achieve a majority in Parliament.
As of the Cabinet reshuffle effective on October 10, 2003, in wake of the murder of Minister for Foreign Affairs, Anna Lindh, the Cabinet has 22 Ministers including the Prime Minister. Since the last organizational change in 1998 the Government Offices has, apart from the Prime Minister's Office and an Office for Administrative Affairs, ten Ministries. The Prime Minister leads the work of the Cabinet and is the official Head of Government. On occasion there have been appointed Deputy Prime Ministers, but when none such exist the Minister with the most seniority in Cabinet, is the designate Deputy Prime Minister. Ten of the Cabinet Ministers are also Heads of Office for their respective Ministries. On October 21, 2004, Göran Persson announced a restructuring effective from November 1. The changes are indicated in the table below.
The cabinet members, including the prime minister, resign their seats in parliament while holding cabinet office. Ministers do not have to be elected to parliament to serve in the cabinet. Upon their visits to the Riksdag, like the weekly question time, the ministers sit at specially designated seats in the lower left hand corner of the session hall.
Effective from November 1, 2004:
Prime Minister's Office
Ministry of Justice
- Thomas Bodström, Head of Office and Minister for Justice
- Jens Orback, Minister for Democracy, Integration and Equality Issues
Ministry for Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Defence
- Leni Björklund, Head of Office and Minister for Defence
Ministry of Health and Social Affairs
- Berit Andnor, Head of Office and Minister for Children and Families
- Ylva Johansson, Minister for Health and Social Affairs
- Morgan Johansson, Minister for Public Health and Social Services
Ministry of Finance
- Pär Nuder, Head of Office and Minister of Finance
- Sven-Erik Österberg, Minister for Local Government and Housing
Ministry of Education, Culture and Science
- Leif Pagrotsky, Head of Office and Minister for Education, Culture and Science
- Ibrahim Baylan, Minister for Primary and Secondary Education
- Lena Hallengren, Minister for Pre-School Education, Youth Affairs and Adult Learning
Ministry for Agriculture, Food and Fisheries
- Ann-Christin Nykvist, Head of Office and Minister for Agriculture, Food and Fisheries
Ministry of the Environment
- Mona Sahlin, Head of Office
- Lena Sommestad, Minister for the Environment
Ministry of Industry, Employment and Communications
- Thomas Östros, Head of Office and Minister for Industry and Trade
- Ulrica Messing, Minister for Communications and Regional Policy
- Hans Karlsson, Minister for Employment
Office for Administrative Affairs
The Office for Administrative Affairs, or Statskontoret, is staffed and led by civil servants. The Permanent Secretary, currently Gunnar Holmgren, is not a member of government.
See also History of Government Offices of Sweden for old governments.
See also: Government Agencies in Sweden
The Ministries in Sweden are relatively small and merely policy-making organizations, relying on Government Agencies who independently carry out Government Policy. A Government Agency is constituted under the authority of a Ministry, but the Ministry is only allowed to influence the Agency by making policy. The Minister in charge is furthermore prohibited from interfering with the day-to-day operation and the outcome in individual cases. An exception to this are the Legations and Embassies in foreign countries, which are under the direct authority and integrated with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
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