“Sweden is a parliamentary democracy that is governed at the national, regional, local and European level. General elections at the national (parliamentary), regional and local levels are held every four years. In the elections, political parties are elected to represent the citizens in the three political assemblies, that is, the municipal, county council or regional assembly and the national parliament (Riksdag). All Swedish citizens aged 18 years or older are entitled to vote in the parliamentary and EU elections. To be entitled to vote in the municipal and county council/regional elections, individuals are required to be at least 18 years of age and a resident of the municipality and county concerned for the past three years. In the 2010 national election, election participation was almost 85% (Election Authority, 2011).
“At the national level, the Swedish people are represented by the Riksdag, which is the supreme political decision-making body in Sweden with 349 seats. The government implements the Riksdag’s decisions and draws up proposals for new laws or law amendments. The Riksdag appoints the Prime Minister, who is requested to form a government. The government is assisted in its work by the government offices, comprising a number of ministries and some 300 central government agencies and public administrative bodies. The task of the government agencies is to implement the decisions made by the Riksdag and the government. They are autonomous in the sense that they act on their own responsibility, in accordance with the law and the guidelines laid down by the government. The work and results are, however, monitored and evaluated by the government.”
Source: Anell A, Glenngård AH, Merkur S. Sweden: Health system review. Health Systems in Transition, 2012, 14(5):1–159.
“The parliament makes the decisions and the government implements them. The government also submits proposals for new laws or law amendments to the parliament.
“The parliament with its 349 members is Sweden’s primary representative forum. The entire parliament is chosen by direct elections based on suffrage for all Swedish citizens aged 18 or over who are, or previously have been, residents of Sweden.
“General elections to the parliament are held on the second Sunday of September every four years. To serve in the parliament, a person has to be a Swedish citizen and aged 18 or more. Seats are distributed among the political parties in proportion to the votes cast for them across the country as a whole.
“Four per cent required
“There is one exception to the rule of full national proportionality: a party must receive at least 4 per cent of all votes in the election to gain representation in the parliament, a rule designed to prevent very small parties from getting in.”
Source: The Swedish Institute. The Swedish System of Government. Last accessed Sept. 28, 2019.
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Page last updated Oct. 16, 2020 by Doug McVay, Editor.