How a Government is formed

The political circumstances determine the government formed after an election. If the Government in office does well in an election, it remains in office. If a new government is to be formed, the Speaker of the Riksdag (the Swedish Parliament) holds consultations with party leaders. The Speaker then proposes a candidate for the post of Prime Minister and the Riksdag votes on the proposal.

If more than half the total number of members of the Riksdag vote against the proposal, it is rejected. If the Speakers proposal for a new Prime Minister is rejected four times, an extraordinary election must be held within three months, unless an ordinary general election is due to be held within the same period. If the Riksdag approves the Speakers proposal, the Prime Minister designate forms a government.

The Prime Minister chooses his government

The Prime Minister chooses which and how many members (ministers) are to be included in his government. Although ministers need not be politicians, most have held political office for many years. The Prime Minister also decides which ministers are to be Heads of Ministries. The Prime Minister and ministers together form the Swedish Government.

The Prime Minister and the other ministers are usually members of the Riksdag. While they are serving in the Government, however, their seats in the Riksdag are filled by substitutes from the electoral lists. To be a member of the Government, a person must be a Swedish citizen.

Statement of Government Policy describes what the Government wants to achieve

At the official opening of the Rikdag each September, the Prime Minister delivers a Statement of Government Policy. In it he presents Government policy goals for the next year and defines priority policy areas at national and international level. Please see related information.

The Government must have the support of the Riksdag

If parliamentary support for the Government diminishes substantially, the Government may be forced to resign and new elections may be held. If at least ten per cent of the members of the Riksdag have lost confidence in a minister, they may request a vote of no confidence. If more than half of the members of the Riksdag vote in favour of a declaration of no confidence, the minister must resign.