The global financial and debt crisis is now in its fifth year. The Government is continuing to counter the weak economic situation with a responsible fiscal policy for jobs and stability. In the 2013 Spring Fiscal Policy Bill, the Government is proposing additional measures in education, work experience, infrastructure and regional development. All in all, the Government is investing some SEK 3 billion in 2013 and 2014, the greater part of it this year.
This is now the fifth year in a row in which the global economy has been marked by crisis. This has led to a long drawn-out recession in Sweden. The Government is therefore proposing more measures to tackle unemployment and create the conditions for a stable recovery. Read more about this in the Government newsletter.
The Swedish welfare state celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. The 100th anniversary of the first national pension system coincides with the largest review of the entire pension system since the pension reform in the 1990s.
On 2 April Sweden, together with a large majority of countries in the UN General Assembly, voted in favour of an international Arms Trade Treaty (ATT).
"The adopted treaty is a major success for Sweden and the international community. For the first time we have a legally binding international agreement that sets standards for the international arms trade. These standards improve our prospects of reducing human suffering, which is one of the consequences of the illicit arms trade and trade that contravenes human rights and international humanitarian law," says Minister for Trade Ewa Björling.
The Government wants to find out how the application of laws and other regulations comply with the Convention on the Rights of the Child and will therefore instruct an inquiry to examine the matter. The inquiry chair will also analyse the pros and cons of incorporating the Convention on the Rights of the Child, i.e. whether it should apply as Swedish law.
"This will be a very important task that can enhance the rights of the child," says Minister for Children and the Elderly Maria Larsson.
The Government proposes that people residing in Sweden without a permit be offered the same subsidised health and medical care as asylum seekers. Adults residing in the country without a permit will be offered care that cannot be postponed, including dental care, maternity care, contraceptive counselling and abortion care.
Anders Borg met French Finance Minister
On 25 March, Minister for Finance Anders Borg welcomed French Minister for the Economy and Finance Pierre Moscovici. They discussed the economic situation, among other things. After the meeting the ministers held a joint press briefing.
Government Newsletter: Ministry for Foreign Affairs launches information campaign for people travelling abroad
Last year, more than fifteen million trips abroad were made from Sweden - an increase of twenty-five per cent since 2009. The Ministry for Foreign Affairs is therefore taking various initiatives to reach out with information on important things to think about before travelling abroad.
Today Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt received the Turkish President Abdullah Gül. Discussions focused on Turkey's EU membership negotiations and the reforms required in various areas.
The re-use of public administration documents is regulated by the Public Sector Information (PSI) Directive. Negotiations on the Commission's proposed amendments to the PSI Directive are to be concluded in spring 2013 and the Swedish Government has now decided to order an inquiry on how the Directive should be implemented in Swedish law. The task of the inquiry includes making it easier for companies and others to access and use public information.