On Thursday 20 October 2011, Deputy Prime Minister Jan Björklund met Deputy President of South Africa Kgalema Motlanthe in Stockholm. The meeting took place within the framework of the seventh Binational Commission (BNC). The purpose of the BNC is to deepen and broaden bilateral relations between Sweden and South Africa.
Jan Björklund met Indian Minister of Communications and Information Technology, Mr. Kapil Sibal
Minister for Education, Deputy Prime Minister Jan Björklund met Mr. Kapil Sibal, Indian Minister of Communications and Information Technology, on Thursday. They discussed a number of issues including cooperation between Indian and Swedish universities.
The Budget Bill contains major investments in education. These include a maths boost with continuing professional development for teachers, a teacher reform with career stages for good teachers, a quality drive in humanities and social sciences at higher education institutions, and more places on training programmes for doctors, dentists, nurses and civil engineers.
Preschool will become an integral part of the school system, with the aim of consolidating its status as
the first step of the education system and of enhancing its quality and equivalence.
In Sweden, marriage may not be entered into without the valid consent of both people. Nevertheless, many young people in our society are worried that they won't be allowed to choose their own partner or spouse. The Swedish Government has therefore adopted an action plan to prevent young people from being forced into marriage with 15 different measures.
Nyamko Sabuni to speak at UN Commission on Status of Women
Next week sees the start of the annual UN meeting looking at global gender equality challenges. Over 3 500 delegates from around the world will take part in the UN Commission on the Status of Women, which this year focuses on the access of girls and women to education. Sweden will also hold its own seminar on gender equality, education and development on 22 February. HRH Princess Madeleine will attend the seminar.
Jan Björklund to Belarusian Minister of Education: Respect human rights and academic freedom
There have been reports that students and researchers have been harassed and barred from access to their universities in connection with the demonstrations following the presidential elections in Belarus in December. Minister for Education Jan Björklund has sent a letter to Belarusian Minister of Education Sergey Aleksandrovich in which he describes the situation as a matter of deep concern.
"It is completely unacceptable that academics are prevented from seeking new knowledge simply because their political opinions do not suit the regime. Belarus is in great need of reforms. Academic freedom is absolutely crucial to the future development of the country," says Mr Björklund.
New ESS agreement signed
Work on the European Spallation Source (ESS) to be built in Lund is making headway. On Thursday night representatives of all the countries involved in the partnership signed an agreement on participation in the planning and construction of the ESS.
The ministers interviewed: Nyamko Sabuni
Watch Minister for Gender Equality Nyamko Sabuni talk about the most important issue concerning gender equality at the moment: the fight against violence towards women. Ms Sabuni also talks about her new role as Deputy Minister for Education. Moreover, she outlines what politics has meant to her as the child of political refugees in Sweden.
The ministers interviewed: Jan Björklund
In a series of interviews with Sweden's Government ministers, it is the turn of Minister for Education and Deputy Prime Minister Jan Björklund. In the interview, he talks about his vision of boosting outcomes in the Swedish education system so that Sweden can become one of the most successful countries in the world. When asked about his political role models, Mr Björklund mentions Winston Churchill, who stood up for his political values even when the odds were against him.